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4 Tips to Sell Your Home Faster


4 Tips to Sell Your Home Faster | MyKCM

Since June of last year, we have seen an increase in the inventory of homes for sale month per month. Every spring and summer, the inventory increases because people want to sell their home. For those with children, they may want to be in their new home for the beginning of the school year.

If you are one of those sellers, you may find these 4 tips helpful in getting your home sold more quickly.

1. Make buyers feel at home

Declutter your home! Pack away all personal items like pictures, awards, and sentimental belongings. Make them feel like they belong in this house! According to the Profile of Home Staging by the National Association of Realtors,

“83% of buyers’ agents said staging a home made it easier for a buyer to visualize the property as a future home.”

Not only will your house spend less time on the market, but the same report mentioned that,

“One-quarter of buyers’ agents said that staging a home increased the dollar value offered between 1 – 5%, compared to other similar homes on the market that were not staged.”

2. Keep it organized

Since you took the time to declutter, keep it organized! Before the buyers show up, pick up toys, make the bed, and put away clean dishes. It is also a good idea to put out some cookies fresh from the oven or a scented candle. Buyers will remember the smell of your home! According to the same report, the kitchen is one of the most important rooms to stage in order to attract more buyers.

3. Give buyers full access

One of the top four elements when selling your home is access! If your home is available anytime, that opens up more opportunity to find a buyer right away. Some buyers, especially those relocating, don’t have much time available. If they cannot get into the house, they will move on to the next one.

4. Price it right

As we mentioned at the beginning, more inventory coming into the market guarantees there will be some competition. You want to make sure your home is noticed. The key to selling your house in 2019 is ensuring it is Priced to Sell Immediately (PTSI). That way, your home will be seen by the greatest amount of buyers and will sell at a great price before more competition comes to market!

Bottom Line

If you want to sell your house in the least amount of time at the best price with as little hassle as possible, a local real estate professional is a useful guide. Call them today to find out what you need to do to sell your home more quickly.

Stop Wondering What Your Budget Is & Get Pre-Approved!


Stop Wondering What Your Budget Is & Get Pre-Approved! | MyKCM

In many markets across the country, the number of buyers searching for their dream homes outnumbers the number of homes for sale. This has led to a competitive marketplace where buyers often need to stand out. One way to show that you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search.

Even if you are not in an incredibly competitive market, understanding your budget will give you the confidence of knowing whether or not your dream home is within your reach.

Freddie Mac lays out the advantages of pre-approval in the ‘My Home’ section of their website:

“It’s highly recommended that you work with your lender to get pre-approved before you begin house hunting. Pre-approval will tell you how much home you can afford and can help you move faster, and with greater confidence, in competitive markets.”

One of the many advantages of working with a local real estate professional is that many have relationships with lenders who will be able to help you through this process. Once you have selected a lender, you will need to fill out their loan application and provide them with important information regarding “your credit, debt, work history, down payment and residential history.”

Freddie Mac describes the ‘4 Cs’ that help determine the amount you will be qualified to borrow:

  1. Capacity: Your current and future ability to make your payments
  2. Capital or cash reserves: The money, savings, and investments you have that can be sold quickly for cash
  3. Collateral: The home, or type of home, that you would like to purchase
  4. Credit: Your history of paying bills and other debts on time

Getting pre-approved is one of many steps that will show home sellers that you are serious about buying, and it often helps speed up the process once your offer has been accepted.

Bottom Line

Many potential home buyers overestimate the down payment and credit scores necessary to qualify for a mortgage. If you are ready and willing to buy, you may be pleasantly surprised at your ability to do so today.

5 Hacks to Pay Off Your Home Loan Sooner

5 Hacks to Pay Off Your Home Loan Sooner



Despite many financial experts advising homeowners not to pay off their home loan early but to invest the money elsewhere, home ownership is still one of the primary goals for most Americans. The obvious advice of making the largest possible deposit on your home in the beginning to reduce the size of the mortgage goes without saying. But you don’t have to get lost in the fantasy of owning the house outright when you can follow these tips which will help you make the dream a reality faster than you expected. 

1. Make Higher Repayments

Making higher repayments on your mortgage means you will save a lot of money. If you get a cheaper loan, make sure you can make extra payments and treat it as if the rate is two or three points higher. For example, if your rate is four per cent, and you pay it off as if it’s five per cent you’ll pay it off much sooner, and save heaps. If you only pay one extra monthly payment each year, you’ll pay your mortgage off 11 years sooner, and save thousands of dollars in interest. 

2. Make Fortnightly Repayments

The concept of a fortnightly repayment is simple. If your lender or mortgage deal allows it, pay half of your monthly mortgage repayments every two weeks. That adds up to 13 full monthly payments every year. Depending on your interest rate, this can mean your 30-year mortgage is paid off eight years earlier. Another way of reducing your loan period without feeling it in your pocket is to pay a few dollars a week extra into your home loan. The balance will reduce sooner because these payments come right off the balance. 


3. Refinance For A Shorter Term

You can refinance for a shorter term loan to pay off your mortgage sooner. If your loan is over 30 years, having it to 15 or even 10 years will make your payments higher, but you will own your home outright in a fraction of the time. But make sure you get a lower interest rate to make it worthwhile. 

4. Reconfigure Payments But Don’t Refinance

To help you reach your early pay-off goal, ask your lender to show you how much you would be paying a month at various time frames at the same interest rate. For example, if your loan is over 30 years, ask what the payment would be over 15 or 10 years, or whatever you think would better suit you. Or You could also try Bankrate’s mortgage payment calculator(1) to work it out for yourself. 


5. Make Lump Sum Payments

You can reduce the time it takes to pay off your mortgage by adding any extra lump-sum payments to your principal. If you have a windfall, inheritance, a tax refund or work bonus, you can use it to chip away at your loan. If you leave the extra cash in another account, you might be tempted to spend it on things you could do without. Even if your lump sum is only small, it will help you whittle away your loan, but always follow your lender’s rules for making principal-only repayments, in case you are charged a prepayment penalty for paying the mortgage off early.


For all your real estate needs, whether buying or renting in Deltona Florida, call 

Julie Cvercko on 386-668-8668 or email Julie@primerealestateinc.com.





  1. https://www.bankrate.com/calculators/mortgages/mortgage-loan-payoff-calculator.aspx


    Author’s Bio 


    Alex Morrison has worked with a range of businesses giving him an in-depth understanding of many different industries including outdoor blinds, financial support, and health care. As the owner of Integral Media, he is now utilizing his knowledge and experience with his rapidly increasing client portfolio to help them achieve their business goals.


Tips for Bringing Your Rental Property to Its Full Potential

Investing in rental property comes with many benefits, and it is steadily growing in popularity with the advent of companies like Airbnb and Vrbo. While this means there are more and more opportunities opening up for novice and seasoned real estate investors alike, it also means that competition is growing more fierce. Investors who want a good return on their investments must take the necessary steps to upkeep their property and steadily attract renters. If you’re a rental property owner or potential buyer, these tips can help you maximize your property’s potential.


Put in the Work


If you want your property to stand out among the crowd, it will take some sweat equity. While there are projects that may require professionals, there’s a lot you can do yourself. According to Angie’s List, doing some basic landscaping and giving the inside of the home a good cleaning is the first step to making the property more appealing. Also, putting a fresh coat of paint on the interior and exterior can liven up your space, and installing a security system will help your tenants feel safe in their new environment. Along with landscaping, you can add curb appeal by painting the front door a vibrant color (e.g., red, teal, yellow, etc.).


Spruce up the Space


While you’re at it, you can boost the value of your property with add-ons that make it appeal to a higher-income market. Little things can make a big difference when it comes to add-ons. For instance, rearranging to create more storage space, adding modern light fixtures, and replacing the hardware on your cabinets can revitalize your rooms. Also, make sure the home has inviting blankets, pillows, linens and other textiles. If you want to take it a step further, putting in stainless steel appliances will raise the value even more.


Perform Regular Cleaning and Maintenance


Once you have your property in great shape, you’ll want to keep it that way. This means it will need to regularly be cleaned and maintained. If your schedule allows for it, you can save some money by doing all of it yourself; however, many property investors find it well worth the investment to hire a property maintenance company to handle the upkeep. Here are a few tasks that a property maintenance service usually includes:


  • Cleaning
  • Electrical
  • Plumbing
  • HVAC
  • Lawn maintenance
  • Pressure washing


A property maintenance company will often offer more intensive services, such as carpentry, painting, facade repair, and storm clean-up. Although it’s an additional cost, hiring a maintenance company will save you loads of time and energy and ultimately make your investment a smoother experience. Use online tools like this one to find a company near you.


Show Off Your Hard Work


You can bring all your hard work together by providing a good listing with photographs of your property. Most potential renters use an online listing service to find their next home, and your listing should be compelling enough to stand out among the competition. Be sure to hire a professional photographer to capture your property in the best light possible. Remember that the listing will probably be a potential renter’s first impression of your property.


Rental property investment comes with many incredible opportunities, but the competition is also growing. If you want your property to reach its full potential, you will need to take steps that make it appeal to renters. Use sweat equity to whip the home in shape, and remember to make little changes that can raise the property value. Ensure that the property is well maintained, and showcase its desirability by creating a great listing. With a little investing and hard work, you can keep your property occupied and increase your profits.


Photo Credit: Pexels

Why Is So Much Paperwork Required to Get a Mortgage?


Why Is So Much Paperwork Required to Get a Mortgage? | MyKCM

When buying a home today, why is there so much paperwork mandated by the lenders for a mortgage loan application? It seems like they need to know everything about you. Furthermore, it requires three separate sources to validate each and every entry on the application form. Many buyers are being told by friends and family that the process was a hundred times easier when they bought their home ten to twenty years ago.

There are two very good reasons that the loan process is much more onerous on today’s buyer than perhaps any other time in history.

1. The government has set new guidelines that now demand that the bank proves beyond any doubt that you are indeed capable of paying the mortgage.

During the run-up to the housing crisis, many people ‘qualified’ for mortgages that they could never pay back. This led to millions of families losing their home. The government wants to make sure this can’t happen again.

2. The banks don’t want to be in the real estate business.

Over the last several years, banks were forced to take on the responsibility of liquidating millions of foreclosures and negotiating an additional million plus short sales. Just like the government, they don’t want more foreclosures. For that reason, they have to double (maybe even triple) check everything on the application.

However, there is some good news in this situation.

The housing crash that mandated that banks be extremely strict on paperwork requirements also allowed you to get a low mortgage interest rate.

The friends and family who bought homes ten or twenty years ago experienced a simpler mortgage application process, but also paid a higher interest rate (the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage was 8.12% in the 1990s and 6.29% in the 2000s).

If you went to the bank and offered to pay 7% instead of around 4%, they would probably bend over backward to make the process much easier.

Bottom Line

Instead of concentrating on the additional paperwork required, let’s be thankful that we are able to buy a home at historically low rates.

3 Things to Know in the Housing Market Today!


3 Things to Know in the Housing Market Today! | MyKCM

A lot is happening in the world, and it’s having a direct impact on the housing market. The reality is this: some of it is positive and some of it may be negative. Some we just don’t know yet.

The following three areas of the housing market are critical to understand: interest rates, building materials, and the outlook for an economic slowdown.

1. Interest Rates

One of the most important things to consider when buying a home is the interest rate you will be charged to borrow the money. In our recent post we posed the question, “Are Low Interest Rates Here To Stay?” The latest information from Freddie Mac makes it appear they are. We are currently at a 21-month low in interest rates.3 Things to Know in the Housing Market Today! | MyKCM

2. Building Materials

Talk of tariffs could also affect the housing market. According to a recent article, the National Association of Home Builders reports that as much as $10 billion in goods imported from China are used in homebuilding. Depending on the outcome of the tariff and trade discussions between several countries, there could be as much as a 25% boost in the cost of building materials.

3. Economic Slowdown

In a prior blog post on this topic, we began the year with many economic leaders thinking we could expect a recession in late 2019 or early 2020. As spring approached, we reported that economists had started to push that projection past 2020.  Now, three leading surveys indicate that it may begin in the next eighteen months.3 Things to Know in the Housing Market Today! | MyKCM

Bottom Line

We are in a strong housing market. Wages are increasing, home prices are appreciating, and mortgage rates are the lowest they have been in 21 months.  Whether you are thinking of buying or selling, it’s a great time to be in the market.

The Feeling You Get from Owning Your Home


The Feeling You Get from Owning Your Home | MyKCM

We often talk about the financial reasons why buying a home makes sense. But, more often than not, the emotional reasons are the more powerful and compelling ones.

No matter what shape or size your living space is, the concept and feeling of home can mean different things to different people. Whether it’s a certain scent or a favorite chair, that feeling of safety and security you gain from owning your own home is simultaneously one of the greatest and most difficult to describe.

Frederick Peters, a contributor for Forbesrecently wrote about that feeling, and the pride that comes from owning your own home.

“As homeowners discover, living in an owned home feels different from living in a rented home. It’s not just that an owner can personalize the space; it touches a chord even more fundamental than that.

Homeownership enhances the longing for self-determination at the heart of the American Dream. First-time homeowners, young or old, radiate not only pride but also a sense of arrival, a sense of being where they belong. It cannot be duplicated by owning a 99-year lease.”

Bottom Line

Owning a home brings a sense of accomplishment and confidence that cannot be achieved through renting. If you are debating renewing your lease, let’s get together before you do to answer any questions you may have about what your next steps should be, and what is required in today’s market!

Multigenerational Homes Are on the Rise


Multigenerational Homes Are on the Rise | MyKCM

As loved ones start to get older, we start to wonder: how long will they be able to live alone? Will they need someone there to help them with daily life? There’s a reason to ask those questions now more than ever, as the average life expectancy in the U.S. is 78 years old! As a result, 41% of Americans in the market are searching for a home that can accommodate a multigenerational family.

The graph below shows the number of people by generation that purchased a multigenerational home because they will either be taking care of an aging parent or they just want to spend time together.Multigenerational Homes Are on the Rise | MyKCMOf those buyers, 26% indicated they will be taking care of an aging parent, and 14% said they want to spend time with an aging parent. These numbers do not come as a surprise. According to Pew Research Center, 64 million Americans (20% of the population) lived in a multigenerational household in 2016 (Last numbers available).Multigenerational Homes Are on the Rise | MyKCMAn increasing number of studies affirm the benefits of being part of a multigenerational household. These benefits aren’t just for the grandchildren, but for the grandparents as well. According to these two resources:

The University of Oxford

“Children who are close to their grandparents have fewer emotional and behavioral problems and are better able to cope with traumatic life events, like a divorce or bullying at school”.

Boston College

“Researchers found that emotionally close ties between grandparents and adult grandchildren reduced depressive symptoms in both groups”.

This research gives helpful insight into why 41% of Americans are in the market to buy a multigenerational home.

Bottom Line

If you have a home that could accommodate a multigenerational family and are thinking about selling, now is the perfect time to put it on the market! The number of buyers looking for this type of home will only continue to increase.

Starting the Search for Your Dream Home? Here Are 5 Tips!


Starting the Search for Your Dream Home? Here Are 5 Tips! | MyKCM

In today’s real estate market, low inventory dominates the conversation in many areas of the country. It can often be frustrating to be a first-time homebuyer if you aren’t prepared.

In a realtor.com article entitled, “How to Find Your Dream Home—Without Losing Your Mind,” the author highlights some steps that first-time homebuyers can take to help carry their excitement of buying a home throughout the whole process.

1. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage Before You Start Your Search

One way to show you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search. Even if you are in a market that is not as competitive, understanding your budget will give you the confidence of knowing whether or not your dream home is within your reach.

This step will also help you narrow your search based on your budget and won’t leave you disappointed if the home you tour, and love, ends up being outside your budget!

2. Know the Difference Between Your ‘Must-Haves’ and ‘Would-Like-To-Haves’

Do you really need that farmhouse sink in the kitchen to be happy with your home choice? Would a two-car garage be a convenience or a necessity? Could the ‘man cave’ of your dreams be a future renovation project instead of a make-or-break right now?

Before you start your search, list all the features of a home you would like and then qualify them as ‘must-haves’‘should-haves’, or ‘absolute-wish list’ items. This will help keep you focused on what’s most important.

3. Research and Choose a Neighborhood You Want to Live In

Every neighborhood has its own charm. Before you commit to a home based solely on the house itself, the article suggests test-driving the area. Make sure that the area meets your needs for “amenities, commute, school district, etc. and then spend a weekend exploring before you commit.”

4. Pick a House Style You Love and Stick to It

Evaluate your family’s needs and settle on a style of home that would best serve those needs. Just because you’ve narrowed your search to a zip code, doesn’t mean that you need to tour every listing in that zip code.

An example from the article says, “if you have several younger kids and don’t want your bedroom on a different level, steer clear of Cape Cod–style homes, which typically feature two or more bedrooms on the upper level and the master on the main.”

5. Document Your Home Visits

Once you start touring homes, the features of each individual home will start to blur together. The article suggests keeping your camera handy to document what you love and don’t love about each property you visit.

Making notes on the listing sheet as you tour the property will also help you remember what the photos mean, or what you were feeling while touring the home.

Bottom Line

In a high-paced, competitive environment, any advantage you can give yourself will help you on your path to buying your dream home.

Tips for Young, First-Time Homeowners on Starting Fresh, Organized, and Downsiz

One of the best gifts you can give yourself as a young, first-time homeowner is a clean, organized start. You certainly don’t want to pack your brand-new home full of junk -- unnecessary items that you’ve amassed over the years. And if you think only older people have to worry about downsizing and hardcore organizing, then think again. Everyone can benefit from a somewhat minimalist mindset -- especially someone starting their adult life. Here are some tips to make that happen.


Examine your closet


In our closets, lurk the largest collection of items we don’t really need anymore. The biggest culprit is usually our clothes, where we amass a staggering amount of completely unnecessary clutter. Thankfully, it’s very easy to make some inroads. As LifeHacker suggests, if you get rid of clothes that don’t fit, are torn or stained, are simply ugly/out of style, and don’t make you happy, then you’ll be well on your way. Beyond that, think about getting rid of anything you haven’t worn in a year. Make the process as cut and dry as possible; that will help it be successful.


Move on to your media


How many books, movies, CDs, etc. do you really need? Consider cutting your collections down to the basics and selling/donating the rest (an app like Decluttr makes this pretty easy). In this day and age, with streaming music and video options, it’s not imperative that you hold onto every DVD and album you love.


Digitize your paper clutter


What if you could get rid of a ton of physical items but not get rid of them at all? Luckily, you can. Digitizing (scanning) your important paper documents is a great way to downsize and declutter. This includes receipts, invoices, tax documents, and even photos. Some tips for doing this include scanning and saving in a universal file type like a PDF, keeping the documents on a physical drive as well as in the cloud in digital storage, and scanning things as soon as you get them. 


Make sure most things have more than one purpose


Putting aside family heirlooms and some emotionally charged keepsakes, you should try to find at least two reasons for keeping each item in your home. If you can’t think of something as multipurpose, you should put it on the downsizing chopping block first. For example, your TV stand. It serves the purpose of holding up your TV and storing your movies/gaming systems inside its cabinet. But what if those cabinets are empty. Then it only serves one purpose. Mount your TV to the wall instead. See how this works?


Get some help


It’s understandable to take a “it’s my stuff and I know what’s best for it” kind of mentality. You know how you want your new home organized. How could anyone be better at that than you? Well, some people are, and they are called professional organizers. If you’re feeling really stressed out and overwhelmed by the downsizing and decluttering process, it might be worth the money to hire one. A home organizer typically charges between $257 and $744.


Change your address


Now that you’ve bought your first home, did you remember to change your address? Follow this change of address checklist to make ensure you’ve alerted all the proper channels of your new address. 


Starting a new family at a new home or beginning a new career as a single person are both big moments in life where a lot of excess clutter, baggage, and space can really tie you down. If you’re just now moving into your first home, make sure you do what you can to start off clean and organized.



Becoming A Landlord: The Pros and Cons of Owning A Rental Property

Becoming a landlord is a big decision, but it’s one that many Americans have made over the years because of the benefits that often come with it. Having an extra source of income for several months out of the year is a huge plus, and if you’re able to maintain the property well, you can sell it down the road when the market is at its peak. Diversifying your investment portfolio is a great way to add financial security to your life as well, especially if you have a family.


However, there are many things to consider when you’re thinking of renting out a property. With the benefits also come a few cons, such as laying out money in the beginning to make updates and fill the house with furniture, decor, and necessities for your renters. If your year-round home is in a different city or state than the rental, you’ll also have to pay someone to make sure the general upkeep is taken care of throughout the year and that security is a priority. If you aren’t careful, a rental property can take a lot of your time, money, and energy. With the right moves, you can make it a success. Here are a few things to consider--both the good and the bad.


Managing the property


Managing a property is a big job, which is why there are companies out there that will take the reins for you when it comes to keeping up with profits, repairs, maintenance, and the cost of making sure your property is in great condition for your renters. Having a professional property manager like Great Jones will take some of the burden off your shoulders so you can focus on other things, and knowing you’re in good hands will give you peace of mind that you’re getting the most value out of your investment.


Knowing what renters want


One of the most important things about owning a rental property is being aware of what your guests want and need in order to have a good time. This will help to ensure that they keep coming back, and that they recommend your property to friends and family. Do some research online to find out what renters in your area expect when they go on vacation or when they’re on a business trip, and think about how those things might be worked into your budget. For instance, if your property is close to a lot of family-friendly activities--such as theme parks or beaches--you might consider adding more places to sleep by installing pull-out couches or bunk beds.


Finding out what you’re responsible for


The insurance requirements for rental properties vary by state, so make sure you read up on what you’ll be responsible for and what the cost will be. Renting out a property to several different guests throughout the year is different than renting out as a “landlord”--meaning charging one person or one family to stay in your home for several months at a time--and requires a different policy. You’ll need to protect your property against fire and other damage, so talk to a professional who can help you figure out the best plan for you.


Using your rental


If you own a rental property that only gets used seasonally, you may be able to use it yourself for up to 14 days out of the year and still get the benefit of tax deductions. Do a little research to find out the details according to where you live.


Becoming a landlord and renting out property is a big job. However, it can allow you to reap quite a few rewards if you’re prepared, so if this is a challenge you’re considering taking on, do some research to find out what your responsibilities are and how best to run your property.

Why Access Is One of the Most Important Factors in Getting Your House Sold!

Why Access Is One of the Most Important Factors in Getting Your House Sold!

Why Access Is One of the Most Important Factors in Getting Your House Sold! | MyKCM

So, you’ve decided to sell your house. You’ve hired a real estate professional to help you through the entire process, and they have asked you what level of access you want to provide to your potential buyers.

There are four elements to a quality listing. At the top of the list is access, followed by condition, financing, and price. There are many levels of access that you can provide to your agent so that he or she can show your home.

Here are five levels of access that you can give to buyers, along with a brief description:

  1. Lockbox on the Door – this allows buyers the ability to see the home as soon as they are aware of the listing, or at their convenience.
  2. Providing a Key to the Home – although the buyer’s agent may need to stop by an office to pick up the key, there is little delay in being able to show the home.
  3. Open Access with a Phone Call – the seller allows showings with just a phone call’s notice.
  4. By Appointment Only (example: 48-Hour Notice) – Many buyers who are relocating for a new career or promotion start working in that area prior to purchasing their home. They often like to take advantage of free time during business hours (such as their lunch break) to view potential homes. Because of this, they may not be able to plan their availability far in advance or may be unable to wait 48 hours to see the house.
  5. Limited Access (example: the home is only available on Mondays or Tuesdays at 2 pm or for only a couple of hours a day) – This is the most difficult way to be able to show your house to potential buyers.

With more competition coming to the market this spring, access can make or break your ability to get the price you are looking for, or even sell your house at all.

Renters Paying Substantially More While Owning Costs Less

Renters Paying Substantially More While Owning Costs Less

Renters Paying Substantially More While Owning Costs Less | MyKCM

In a recent Insights Blog, CoreLogic reported that rent prices have skyrocketed since 2005. Meanwhile, the typical mortgage payment has actually decreased.

“CoreLogic’s national rent index was up 36% in December 2018 compared with December 2005, while the typical mortgage payment was down 4% over that period.”

Renters Paying Substantially More While Owning Costs Less | MyKCM

Why the difference between the costs of renting versus owning?

It makes sense that rents have risen. However, how did mortgage payments decrease? CoreLogic explained:

“It’s mainly because mortgage rates back in December 2005 were significantly higher, averaging 6.3% for a fixed-rate 30-year loan, compared with 4.6% in December 2018.

The national median sale price in December 2005 – $190,000 – was lower than the $220,305 median in December 2018, but because of higher mortgage rates in 2005 the typical monthly mortgage payment was slightly higher back then – $941 – compared with $904 in December 2018.”

Additionally, a recent report by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) showed that purchasing a home requires less of your monthly paycheck.

According to the Economists’ Outlook Blog, NAR’s February 2019 Housing Affordability Index showed that the “percentage of income needed” to pay the typical mortgage has decreased the last three months.

  • November - 17.3%
  • December - 16.9%
  • January - 16.2%
  • February – 15.9%

Bottom Line

What does this all mean to the current housing market? We think First American said it best in a post last week:

“The mortgage rate-driven affordability surge has arrived just in time… Rising affordability has already benefited home buyers and, if the lower rate environment persists, we’re in for a great spring home-buying season.”


Why Pet-Friendly Homes Are in High Demand


Why Pet-Friendly Homes Are in High Demand | MyKCM

One of the many benefits of owning your own home is the freedom to find your ‘furever’ friend. By pointing out the aspects of your home that make it ‘pet-friendly’ in your listing, you’ll attract these buyers, rather than alienating the 68% of American households that have a pet!

If you are one of the many homeowners looking to list your home for sale, how do you stand out to the millions of pet parents searching for their dream home?

Whether a dog person, a cat person, or someone who prefers the company of another pet species, 99% of pet owners say that they consider their animal to be family. When finding a home, 95% of animal owners believe it is important that a housing community allows animals.

study by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) revealed that there are many aspects of the home buying, selling and owning experience that have been greatly impacted by our love for our pets.

This should come as no surprise, as $72 billion was spent on pets in the U.S in 2018. NAR’s President William E. Brown shed some light on the impact of pet owners and their home search.

“It is important to understand the unique needs and wants of animal owners when it comes to homeownership. REALTORS® understand that when someone buys a home, they are buying it with the needs of their whole family in mind; ask pet owners, and they will enthusiastically agree that their animals are part of their family.”

The Power of Pets When Choosing the Right Home

  • 89% of pet owners say they would not give up their pet due to a housing restriction
  • 81% of Americans say their pets play a role in their housing situation
  • 31% of animal owners have refused to put in an offer on a home because it wasn’t a good fit for their animals
  • 19% of Americans say they would consider moving for their pet
  • 12% percent have moved for their pet

New home builders have actually begun installing retractable pet gates that tuck away neatly inside door jams as a highly requested feature in new homes to attract pet-parents.

So, if you are a homeowner looking to sell in today’s pet-friendly environment, point out the features of your home that will attract pet owners:

  • Fully fenced in backyard – (91% of pet owners ranked this as the most important feature of a home to accommodate their pet)
  • Locations of dog parks/walking paths/pet-friendly beaches in the area (71% ranked this as the top feature of any neighborhood they would consider)
  • Proximity to veterinarians/groomers/pet supply stores (31%)

Bottom Line

Americans love their pets and will look for pet-friendly features in the home they wish to buy, so take advantage of this knowledge by pointing out your home’s ability to meet their needs.

Budget-Friendly House Selling Tips for Busy Parents

Image courtesy of Unsplash


Budget-Friendly House Selling Tips for Busy Parents


Are you considering listing your home for sale but are half-afraid you won’t be able to present the house well? We have good news! Not only can busy parents have their home ready for the market, but with a few smart strategies, you can also have it spotless and clutter-free in time for showings. Here’s how to navigate preparations and avoid going broke in the process. 


Depersonalize Decor


It’s fun to decorate your home with your kids in mind, but when it comes time to sell your house, Realty 101 explains that depersonalizing is your friend. Throughout your home, including kids’ bedrooms and bathrooms, you need to aim for a decor that won’t remind potential buyers you live there. That means family photos, refrigerator art, toy bins, collections, and so on all need to be removed. Theme decor can feel tricky, but you can replace cartoon shower curtains and race car comforters inexpensively, just shop big retailers like Kohl’s. By checking online for Kohl's coupons, you can stretch your dollars and put out attractive and inexpensive replacements, then store their favorites until you have settled into the new place. 


Do a Deep Clean


Presenting a thoroughly cleaned house is one of the keys to a successful sale, and when you have kids, it can be a challenge to get it clean and keep it that way. So, plan to polish every nook and cranny, and assemble some smart tools for the job. Organize a cleaning caddy with your favorite selection of cleansers and gadgets, and keep it handy for quick refreshers. A well-chosen duster is a boon, and for crumbs, entryways, and play areas, a handheld vacuum is nearly indispensable. For stocking up on all your cleaning goods, Walmart offers everyday low prices and a broad selection. You can save even more and make it super convenient by shopping online and choosing items which are discounted when you pick them up at the store, which is both economical and efficient. 


Pick Out Paint


Once you pull down personal items and have a spotless home, it’s the perfect time to paint. When it comes to selecting colors, neutral walls are generally your best bet. Think about cool shades of grey or pale blues. One great way to handle refreshing the kids’ rooms is to give them just a couple of shades to pick from and go from there. Giving them a say in the process can take away the sting of losing special decor, and be sure to remind them they can pick stuff for the new house as well. Home Depot offers a full selection of paint and supplies, and since you won’t be staying, consider low-cost paint. The new homeowners might paint over it anyway, and this way you can present the space in an appealing manner without overspending.


Storage Solutions


Removing your kids’ excess things is one thing, but what do you do with what’s left behind? With a busy family, there will be some things that simply can’t be stowed until after the move, such as favorite toys, sporting equipment, school supplies, baby gear, and so forth. HGTV points out that one way to tackle the conundrum is to invest in aesthetically pleasing storage containers. Choose something attractive that you can display, such as trunks or baskets. Also, keep something handy you can toss things into on your way out the door, like a small laundry basket or bag. Keep space set aside in the car for the last minute stash and you’ll be set to snag any short-notice showings. For baskets, bins, and other storage containers, Michael’s has a broad variety to mesh with your decor, and you can check their website for current deals


Getting your home ready to sell is a big deal. Even if your family is on the go, you can prepare to list your property without too much trouble or expense. When showings come along, you’ll be ready in a flash, and thanks to your preparations, you’ll be moving to your new place in no time!

Looking to Upgrade Your Current Home? Now’s the Time to Move-Up!

Looking to Upgrade Your Current Home? Now’s the Time to Move-Up! | MyKCM

In every area of the country, homes that are priced at the top 25% of the price range for that area are considered to be Premium Homes. In today’s real estate market there are deals to be had at the higher end! This is great news for homeowners who want to upgrade from their current house and move-up to a premium home.

Much of the demand for housing over the past couple years has come from first-time buyers looking for their starter home, which means that many of the more expensive homes that have been listed for sale have not seen as much interest.

This mismatch in demand and inventory has created a Buyer’s Market in the luxury and premium home markets according to the ILHM’s latest Luxury Report. For the purpose of the report, a luxury home is defined as one that costs $1 million or more.

“A Buyer’s Market indicates that buyers have greater control over the price point. This market type is demonstrated by a substantial number of homes on the market and few sales, suggesting demand for residential properties is slow for that market and/or price point.”

The authors of the report were quick to point out that the current conditions at the higher end of the market are no cause for concern,

“While luxury homes may take longer to sell than in previous years, the slower pace, increased inventory levels and larger differences between list and sold prices, represent a normalization of the market, not a downturn.”

Luxury can mean different things to different people. It could mean a secluded home with a ton of property for privacy to one person, or a penthouse in the center of it all for someone else. Knowing what characteristics you are looking for in a premium home and what luxury means to you will help your agent find your dream home.

Bottom Line

If you are debating upgrading your current house to a premium or luxury home, now is the time!

4 Reasons to Buy a Home in the Spring

4 Reasons to Buy a Home in the Spring

4 Reasons to Buy a Home in the Spring | MyKCM

Spring has sprung, and it’s a great time to buy a home! Here are four reasons to consider buying today instead of waiting.

1. Prices Will Continue to Rise

CoreLogic’s latest U.S. Home Price Insights reports that home prices have appreciated by 4.4% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts that prices will continue to increase at a rate of 4.6% over the next year.

Home values will continue to appreciate for years. Waiting no longer makes sense.

2. Mortgage Interest Rates Are Projected to Increase

Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey shows that interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage came in at 4.41% last week. Most experts predict that rates will rise over the next 12 months. The Mortgage Bankers Association, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the National Association of Realtors are in unison, projecting rates will increase by this time next year.

An increase in rates will impact YOUR monthly mortgage payment. A year from now, your housing expense will increase if a mortgage is necessary to buy your next home.

3. Either Way, You Are Paying a Mortgage

Some renters have not yet purchased a home because they are uncomfortable taking on the obligation of a mortgage. Everyone should realize that unless you are living with your parents rent-free, you are paying a mortgage - either yours or your landlord’s.

As an owner, your mortgage payment is a form of ‘forced savings’ that allows you to have equity in your home that you can tap into later in life. As a renter, you guarantee your landlord is the person with that equity.

Are you ready to put your housing cost to work for you?

4. It’s Time to Move On with Your Life

The cost of a home is determined by two major components: the price of the home and the current mortgage rate. It appears that both are on the rise.

But what if they weren’t? Would you wait?

Examine the actual reason you are buying and decide if it is worth waiting. Whether you want to have a great place for your children to grow up, greater safety for your family, or you just want to have control over renovations, now could be the time to buy.

Bottom Line

If the right thing for you and your family is to purchase a home this year, buying sooner rather than later could lead to substantial savings.

Do 46 Million Millennials Know They Are Mortgage Ready?


Do 46 Million Millennials Know They Are Mortgage Ready? | MyKCM

Many have written about the millennial generation and whether or not they, as a whole, believe in homeownership as part of attaining the American Dream.

Millennials have taken longer to obtain traditional milestones than the generations before them, such as getting married, having kids, and buying a home. However, that does not mean that they do not still aspire to achieve those things.

History shows that people tend to buy their first home around age 30. Nearly 5 million millennials will turn 30 in the next two years. This will continue to fuel demand for housing.

This is also one of the many reasons why the millennial homeownership rate has continued to grow over the past few years. 48.4% of Americans between the ages of 30-34 now own a home.

There are over 46 million millennials (33% of the generation) who are considered “Mortgage Ready”meaning they meet the qualifications to be approved for a mortgage today!

  • a FICO Score ≥ 620
  • a Back-End Debt to Income Ratio ≤ 25%
  • no Foreclosures or Bankruptcies in the last 7 years
  • no severe delinquencies in 1 year

Rob Chrane, CEO of Down Payment Resource, commented on the findings of the report,

“We now know there are millions of buyers with the income & credit necessary to qualify to buy a home. The biggest question is:

Do they know it? …Unfortunately, many renters don’t investigate homeownership simply because they don’t believe it’s an option.”

The good news is that more and more millennials are realizing that they can afford a home now. Even so, more can be done to increase awareness of low down payment programs to attract even more of this generation.

New data from realtor.com shows that in December, millennials accounted for 42% of all new home loans originated in the month. This is more than any other generation.

Bottom Line

If you are one of the many millennials who may be “Mortgage Ready” but are unsure what your next steps should be, let's get together to help guide you on your path to homeownership!

7 Things To Avoid After Applying for a Mortgage!


7 Things To Avoid After Applying for a Mortgage! | MyKCM

Congratulations! You’ve found a home to buy and have applied for a mortgage! You are undoubtedly excited about the opportunity to decorate your new home! But before you make any big purchases, move any money around, or make any big-time life changes, consult your loan officer. They will be able to tell you how your decision will impact your home loan.

Below is a list of 7 Things You Shouldn’t Do After Applying for a Mortgage! Some may seem obvious, but some may not!

1. Don’t change jobs or the way you are paid at your job! Your loan officer must be able to track the source and amount of your annual income. If possible, you’ll want to avoid changing from salary to commission or becoming self-employed during this time as well.

2. Don’t deposit cash into your bank accounts. Lenders need to source your money and cash is not really traceable. Before you deposit any amount of cash into your accounts, discuss the proper way to document your transactions with your loan officer.

3. Don’t make any large purchases like a new car or new furniture for your new home. New debt comes with it, including new monthly obligations. New obligations create new qualifications. People with new debt have higher debt to income ratios… higher ratios make for riskier loans… and sometimes qualified borrowers no longer qualify.

4. Don’t co-sign other loans for anyone. When you co-sign, you are obligated. As we mentioned, with that obligation comes higher ratios as well. Even if you swear you will not be the one making the payments, your lender will have to count the payment against you.

5. Don’t change bank accounts. Remember, lenders need to source and track assets. That task is significantly easier when there is consistency among your accounts. Before you even transfer money between accounts, talk to your loan officer.

6. Don’t apply for new credit. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a new credit card or a new car. When you have your credit report run by organizations in multiple financial channels (mortgage, credit card, auto, etc.), your FICO score will be affected. Lower credit scores can determine your interest rate and maybe even your eligibility for approval.

7. Don’t close any credit accounts. Many clients have erroneously believed that having less available credit makes them less risky and more likely to be approved. Wrong. A major component of your score is your length and depth of credit history (as opposed to just your payment history) and your total usage of credit as a percentage of available credit. Closing accounts has a negative impact on both those determinants of your score.

Bottom Line

Any blip in income, assets, or credit should be reviewed and executed in a way that ensures your home loan can still be approved. The best advice is to fully disclose and discuss your plans with your loan officer before you do anything financial in nature. They are there to guide you through the process.

How You Can Create a Successful Vacation Rental


Many of us have special memories associated with vacation rentals, and owning one can be just as rewarding. It has never been easier to promote your property online, but there is more that goes into making it a success. Here is what you can do to make an impact on the market.


Why Prep?


It may be tempting to advertise as a vacation rental from the get-go, but investing your time and energy can pay dividends. By their nature, vacation homes are lucrative and can attract a broad spectrum of tenants. They can be a worthwhile income depending on the area and could contribute to retirement savings or other personal funds. In fact, expenses such as repairs and property taxes may be eligible as deductibles from the IRS. Having a rental gives you further options, as you can draw an income from it even if you ultimately plan to sell. Indeed, by making shrewd enhancements, you could appreciate your property’s valuation down the line.


Upgrade Features


As noted, vacation rentals are not exclusively about immediate benefits; there are also returns on investment that can be yielded from upgrades. You do not have to radically overhaul your property; instead, you can make cost-effective enhancements like new faucets and improved lighting. Brightening up rooms can nurture luxuriousness, and this can be a clincher when it comes to staged photographs. Of course, remodeling some rooms is a good idea, as it can offer ROI, such as installing granite surfaces and replacing a tub with a jacuzzi in your bathroom. Making upgrades can sound expensive, but the right enhancements could reward you.


Keep it Spotless


Maintaining a clean rental is a given for success, but the approach you take is flexible. You may want to delegate cleaning by hiring professionals to ready your home and restock supplies when necessary. Certain companies may engage you in the process by taking photographs and maintaining an inventory that you can go over. However, you may want to clean personally, so it’s important to have the right gear on hand, including a sturdy vacuum. A vacuum is an investment, one that needs extensive research from guides to positive and negative reviews. Whatever path you decide upon, always have spare bedding, towels, and hygiene products on hand to make preparing for new guests less onerous, and leave a lasting impression.


Make It Smart


Creating a smart home can make life easier and boost rental appeal. After all, you may not live close, but a smart home can simplify bookings and even benefit a guest’s sense of well-being. Your needs will determine what type of home security you invest in, whether that is monitored alarms or apps to track it yourself. A professional service will vary in cost, but you may prefer a subscription over an app. Smart homes offer comfort, so consider what might improve a guest’s experience. Would their stay be enhanced by an automated thermostat or a smart assistant that could smooth their transition to an unfamiliar environment? The right smart choices can make your rental appear fresh while potentially adding further value to your home.


Stock Up


A furnished property is one thing, but guests — whether families or individuals — will be most assured by the basics. Think along the lines of cupboards full of silverware and dishes, or bathrooms replete with clean towels and toiletries. When you take photographs of your rental, be sure to stage rooms so that these essentials are clearly visible. As well, mention these amenities in your descriptions as viewers will be attentive to omissions of features they could consider important. When you stock up, consider what would make your rental livable and cozy. Your home may have gorgeous surfaces and smart tech, but if it is lacking in a coffee pot or WiFi, that could take business away from you.


Transforming a home may sound like a herculean effort, but it doesn't have to be. Yes, you need plenty of preparation, and your property can benefit from upgrades, but there are also very clear financial benefits. This is an opportunity worth embracing.


Why an Economic Slowdown Will NOT Crush Real Estate this Time


Why an Economic Slowdown Will NOT Crush Real Estate this Time | MyKCM

Last week, the National Association for Business Economics released their February 2019 Economic Policy Survey. The survey revealed that a majority of the panel believe an economic slowdown is in the near future:

“While only 10% of panelists expect a recession in 2019, 42% say a recession will happen in 2020, and 25% expect one in 2021.”

Their findings coincide with three previous surveys calling for a slowdown sometime in the next two years:

  1. The Pulsenomics Survey of Market Analysts
  2. The Wall Street Journal Survey of Economists
  3. The Duke University Survey of American CFOs

That raises the question: Will the real estate market be impacted like it was during the last recession?

A recession does not equal a housing crisis. According to the dictionary definition, a recession is:

“A period of temporary economic decline during which trade and industrial activity are reduced, generally identified by a fall in GDP in two successive quarters.”

During the last recession, prices fell dramatically because the housing collapse caused the recession. However, if we look at the previous four recessions, we can see that home values weren’t negatively impacted:

  • January 1980 to July 1980: Home values rose 4.5%
  • July 1981 to November 1982: Home values rose 1.9%
  • July 1990 to March 1991: Home values fell less than 1%
  • March 2001 to November 2001: Home values rose 4.8%

Most experts agree with Ralph McLaughlin, CoreLogic’s Deputy Chief Economist, who recently explained:

“There’s no reason to panic right now, even if we may be headed for a recession. We’re seeing a cooling of the housing market, but nothing that indicates a crash.”

The housing market is just “normalizing”. Inventory is starting to increase and home prices are finally stabilizing. This is a good thing for both buyers and sellers as we move forward.

Bottom Line

If there is an economic slowdown in our near future, there is no need for fear to set in. As renowned financial analyst, Morgan Housel, recently tweeted:

“An interesting thing is the widespread assumption that the next recession will be as bad as 2008. Natural to think that way, but, statistically, highly unlikely. Could be over before you realized it began.”

What are the Benefits of Becoming a Homeowner?


Every family has a list of important dates. We celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, pet adoptions…and the list goes on. For 64.4 percent of households in the United States, this list includes the day they became a homeowner for the first time!

Why is this date important? Homeownership is not just a roof over your head! It represents shelter, stability, wealth, and pride! For decades, homeownership has been an important part of the American Dream!

However, many question if the next generations see the same benefits of homeownership as their predecessors.

In case we have forgotten, some of those benefits are:

Non-Financial Benefits

  1. Educational Achievement: Homeownership has a positive impact on academic achievement, including reading and math performance in children 3-12 years old.
  2. Civic Participation: “Owning a home means owning a part of the neighborhood.” Homeowners have a stronger connection to their neighborhood and are more committed to volunteer.
  3. Health Benefits: Adjusting for a range of demographic, socioeconomic and housing-related characteristics, homeowners have a substantial health advantage over renters.
  4. Public Assistance: The report shows 47% of homeowners use their home equity credit lines to help pay other debts, diminishing their need for public assistance.
  5. Property Maintenance and Improvement: A well-maintained home not only generates benefits through consumption and safety, but a high-quality structure also raises mental health.
  6. Pride of Ownership: This place is uniquely “yours.” You can customize it according to your likes and personality.

In addition to financial benefits, homeownership also brings significant social benefits. These not only pertain to the family, but extend to the communities, the state, and the country!

Financial Benefits

Buying a home is an investment in your future!

  1. Appreciation: On average, home prices are appreciating annually at a rate of 3.6%. This helps to create a safety net.
  2. Forced Savings: Your mortgage is like a forced savings plan! With each payment, you are reducing the principal of your loan.
  3. Home Equity: Homeownership builds equity every single month. You can later use that equity to start a business, send your children to college, etc.
  4. Net Worth: A homeowners’ net worth is 44x greater than renters! This gives you the financial freedom to invest.
  5. Stability: Rent prices increase 4% annually! A fixed mortgage payment allows you to save for future projects and guard against inflation.
  6. Tax Benefits: The government has created tax benefits to encourage customers to purchase. (Talk to your CPA to see which benefits apply to you).

Bottom Line

Homeownership is and will always be part of the American Dream! There are many financial and non-financial benefits to take advantage of when owning a home. If owning a home is part of your dream, let’s get together to help you with the process!

3 Reasons Why We Are Not Heading Toward Another Housing Crash

3 Reasons Why We Are Not Heading Toward Another Housing Crash

3 Reasons Why We Are Not Heading Toward Another Housing Crash | MyKCM

With home prices softening, some are concerned that we may be headed toward the next housing crash. However, it is important to remember that today’s market is quite different than the bubble market of twelve years ago.

Here are three key metrics that will explain why:

  1. Home Prices
  2. Mortgage Standards
  3. Foreclosure Rates


A decade ago, home prices depreciated dramatically, losing about 29% of their value over a four-year period (2008-2011). Today, prices are not depreciating. The level of appreciation is just decelerating.

Home values are no longer appreciating annually at a rate of 6-7%. However, they have still increased by more than 4% over the last year. Of the 100 experts reached for the latest Home Price Expectation Survey94 said home values would continue to appreciate through 2019. It will just occur at a lower rate.


Many are concerned that lending institutions are again easing standards to a level that helped create the last housing bubble. However, there is proof that today’s standards are nowhere near as lenient as they were leading up to the crash.

The Urban Institute’s Housing Finance Policy Center issues a quarterly index which,

“…measures the percentage of home purchase loans that are likely to default—that is, go unpaid for more than 90 days past their due date. A lower HCAI indicates that lenders are unwilling to tolerate defaults and are imposing tighter lending standards, making it harder to get a loan. A higher HCAI indicates that lenders are willing to tolerate defaults and are taking more risks, making it easier to get a loan.”

Last month, their January Housing Credit Availability Index revealed:

“Significant space remains to safely expand the credit box. If the current default risk was doubled across all channels, risk would still be well within the pre-crisis standard of 12.5 percent from 2001 to 2003 for the whole mortgage market.”


Within the last decade, distressed properties (foreclosures and short sales) made up 35% of all home sales. The Mortgage Bankers’ Association revealed just last week that:

“The percentage of loans in the foreclosure process at the end of the fourth quarter was 0.95 percent…This was the lowest foreclosure inventory rate since the first quarter of 1996.”

Bottom Line

After using these three key housing metrics to compare today’s market to that of the last decade, we can see that the two markets are nothing alike.

Whose Mortgage Do You Want to Pay? Yours or Your Landlord’s?

Whose Mortgage Do You Want to Pay? Yours or Your Landlord’s? | MyKCM


There are some people who haven’t purchased homes because they are uncomfortable taking on the obligation of a mortgage. However, everyone should realize that unless you are living with your parents rent-free, you are paying a mortgage – either yours or your landlord’s.

As Entrepreneur Magazine, a premier source for small business, explained in their article, “12 Practical Steps to Getting Rich”:

“While renting on a temporary basis isn’t terrible, you should most certainly own the roof over your head if you’re serious about your finances. It won’t make you rich overnight, but by renting, you’re paying someone else’s mortgage. In effect, you’re making someone else rich.”

With home prices rising, many renters are concerned about their house-buying power. Mike Fratantoni, Chief Economist at MBA, explained:

“The spring homebuying season is almost upon us, and if rates stay lower, inventory continues to grow, and the job market maintains its strength, we do expect to see a solid spring market.”

As an owner, your mortgage payment is a form of ‘forced savings,’ which allows you to build equity in your home that you can tap into later in life. As a renter, you guarantee the landlord is the person building that equity.

As mentioned before, interest rates are still at historic lows, making it one of the best times to secure a mortgage and make a move into your dream home. Freddie Mac’s latest report shows that rates across the country were at 4.46% last week.

Bottom Line

Whether you are looking for a primary residence for the first time or are considering a vacation home on the shore, now may be the time to buy.

The KonMari Method: Helping You Prep Your House For Sale

The KonMari Method: Helping You Prep Your House For Sale

The KonMari Method: Helping You Prep Your House For Sale | MyKCM

One of the biggest challenges sellers face when listing their house is decluttering. Cleaning out some of the more personal decorating choices allows buyers to imagine themselves living in the house.

Those planning to sell soon are in luck! Marie Kondo, the inventor of the KonMari Method of Tidying Up, has gained popularity with her new Netflix series. She gives some great tips for sorting through years of accumulated possessions that we all collect in our homes.

“The KonMari Method™ encourages tidying by category – not by location – beginning with clothes, then moving on to books, papers, komono (miscellaneous items), and, finally, sentimental items. Keep only those things that speak to the heart, and discard items that no longer spark joy. Thank them for their service – then let them go.”

When you subjectively look at all of your belongings, you can sort through the ones that mean the most to you. Not only will you increase space for more joy-bringing items in your new home, but you will also have a much easier time packing remaining belongings!

“Remember, tidying up isn't about getting rid of stuff. It is about creating an environment that sparks joy and improves your quality of life.”

When selling your house, first impressions matter! Before you or your agent schedule a photographer to take photos for your listing, make sure to tour your home with fresh eyes. Look for any imperfections that a buyer might notice.

When you sort through your more sentimental items, consider packing them away to ensure that you know where they all are. That way, they are safe during open houses and showing appointments. This will also cut down on the amount of packing you need to do right before you move!

Bottom Line

Whether you are selling your house to move up to a larger one, downsizing, or moving in with family, only bring the items that truly spark joy for you. This will not only help cut down on the items you move, but also ensures that you’re off to a great start in your new home!

840 Deltona Blvd. St. F-1
Deltona, Florida 32725

Here's What Our Clients Say About Us

"Well, we sold our home here in Deltona, Fl. On the market less than 24 hours and sold it. Thanks to Prime Real Estate Inc, good folks there. They know how to get it done."  Glen Brenham
Julie and Jake were wonderful. They both went above and beyond helping me in the entire process of finding and buying my new home! Leslie Doherty
This sales associate team has the best experience and guidance to provide any home buyer. I could seriously go on and on. They are authentic. They have integrity. They approach each case covering all the bases. It has been two weeks since I moved into my home and I am still a bit reactionary yet, they have reached out to check on me. I am so grateful. They have real knowledge and experience in so many ways, other parts of the country, the market, dealing with other agents, experience with lenders; they gave me confidence. I feel they treated me with respect and whether I was a multi millionaire or the truth, a person with a tenuous credit score, they did their best for me and with me. Every home we looked at, they provided positive options to flaws or problems. They utilized every communication modality possible to assist me and get thru the whole process. They are down to earth authentic people that understood my fears and gave me time for explanations every time. I learned so much from them. Plus, they dont stop at the end of the sale! They continue to provide excellent service with contacts and advice. I am seriously very grateful. Mary Robison
Julie and Jake best team ever. They are easy-going to work with. Their genuine interest in our needs and desires made buying our property a fantastic experience. They were patient, extremely attentive,and offered sound advice during the entire process. We couldn't be happier with our new home or with the service we received from them. Isabel Candelas Sanabria
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