Brainerd Area Lakes Real Estate Newsletter

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Before Listing Your Home For Sale, Consider a Home Inspection

Yes, you read that right. A home inspection before listing your home.

Usually, the home inspection occurs when a buyer is ready to purchase, but wants to ensure no major issues are found. And this home inspection should definitely still occur. However, a home maintenance inspection before listing can give sellers a complete picture of necessary repairs before they become negotiating points from the buyer. ?

Inspectors are especially helpful at spotting small issues before they become larger, more expensive problems. They can also suggest regular maintenance that should be done as well. This includes things inside and outside, some of which may not be outwardly obvious to someone without expertise.

It’s extremely helpful to walk around your property and recognize the areas that need attention. An inspector can do this with you in addition to providing a full written report that details everything discussed during the inspection.

It is encouraged to have a home maintenance inspection every three to five years. This will help you avoid any major problems getting out of control. One thing to remember with an inspector is that they aren’t selling anything and they do not make money off your repairs. This is why a home maintenance inspection before selling can be the perfect, unbiased opinion you need to prepare your home for sale.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Create a Welcoming Front Entrance for Buyers

If you’re selling your home you know that first impressions count in real estate. First impressions set the stage for a positive showing. When buyers arrive, one of the first things they see is the front entrance and when they leave, they see the entrance area for a second time. So make the first impression a good one!


Stand outside in your driveway and spend a couple minutes looking at your entrance. What’s missing? Is there plant overgrowth? Does it look inviting? What could you do to make it look better? We’ve compiled a list of easy ways you can improve your front entrance for under $100.

1. Paint the Front Door 
If paint is chipping or the color needs updating, this is a cheap fix and something you can do yourself without hiring a professional. If you aren’t sure what color would look best with the color of your home, consider visiting a Sherwin Williams store, or somewhere similar that can give you advice (for free!).

2. Add Flowers or Potted Plants
Nothing quite says “happy” like a beautiful pot of flowers. Add a few pots to your front step, or perhaps a hanging basket. If you are more of the evergreen type, place one or two potted boxwood plants on the front step. These will brighten up your entrance and give it a more inviting feeling.

3. Porch Lights
A couple of updated lights can do wonders for the front of your home, even when they aren’t lit up. Outdated lights give the impression that the home is outdated. In addition, newer porch lights are typically led and give off bright, illuminating light. Perfect for showings later in the evening. You can easily purchase new lights for under $100.

4. A New Door Mat
Don’t let buyers look down and see a worn down, dirty doormat. For $15 you can buy a brand new mat that says “Welcome Home.” How appropriate, right?

5. Replace Door Hardware
Again, it’s a small but subtle item that buyers will notice. Update the hardware/lockset for around $60 and you’ve easily improved the look of your front door.

6. Clean Up Clutter and Overgrowth
Clean out any weeds, dead plants or overgrown bushes so that the walkway and entrance to your home is open and bright. Don’t let the landscaping distract buyers from the home itself.

If you’d like more tips on preparing your home for sale, reach out to us. We have years of experience helping homeowners prepare and successfully sell their homes. You can reach us at 218-820-7355.

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

The Ultimate Guide to Selling Your Home
Brainerd Lakes Area Real Estate

Click here to download the PDF

Monday, April 23, 2018

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

5 Reasons to Avoid For Sale by Owner

If the seller doesn’t know every law and requirement, they open themselves up to lawsuits. It can be easy to make a mistake when you aren’t familiar with the real estate process and specific 

legalities. In addition, the paperwork in general is daunting. A realtor takes this liability and stress off of the seller.

Homes listed with a realtor will always outsell for sale by owner (FSBO) homes. According to the 2016 National Association of Realtor’s Profile of Sellers and Buyers, FSBO sold for 16% less. The average FSBO sales price was $185,000, while the average price for a home represented by an agent was $245,000. That's a difference of $60,000! They also attract a lot less buyers because sellers are unfamiliar with the process. Sellers like to have professional representation on both ends to protect them from potential issues.

There is a reason the majority of sellers use a realtor. It is a full-time job to sell a home, especially if your goal is to sell it quickly and for top dollar. The process of a home sale includes many steps including taking photos, dealing with contracts, hiring an attorney, ensuring the buyer is qualified and finding a title company. Plus, much more!

Scheduling showings and being there to show your home to potential buyers is draining. In addition to scheduling, you also need to be there to show your home. This is after you cleaned up your home to get ready. Your realtor will handle all of these things plus other nuisance tasks like rejecting unsuitable offers and gathering buyer feedback to make your listing more desirable.

Putting a for sale sign in your front yard just doesn’t cut it anymore. Buyers begin their search online and if you aren’t there, they aren’t going to find you. You need exposure and a realtor can offer that through the extensive network of MLS and through fellow agents.

Having a real estate professional sell your home will minimize stress, save time and put more money in your pocket. 

We are ready to help you sell your home.  Please feel free to reach out to us by phone at 218-820-7355 or by email at

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