seller representation: Which Should You Do First - Buy or Sell? - 01/30/19 09:52 AM
Sandra makes some great points about the pros and cons of buying or selling first!  In some markets, sellers will not consider contingent offers especially when there are lots of buyers out looking and the listing has not been on the market for very long. What is best for your situation is not the same as someone else, so it is best to look at all of the options and align your needs with your local market.  Downsizing in our area can be particularly difficult especially when that price point is full of first time buyers that are currently renting and … (2 comments)

seller representation: Sellers: Should You Cancel a Showing Because of the Weather? - 01/23/19 06:56 PM
In the past week, we have received over 12 inches of snow in our part of Iowa.  And this is normal for our winter months.  Especially now that with the snow cover, the temperatures are in the teens and with the wind chill, well below zero.  I was showing homes on Monday to a relocation buyer, which was a holiday for many people.  It was cold.  And the houses that we wanted to see were all vacant except for one.  Because the last one was occupied, I had tried several times on Sunday to schedule a time to see it before … (4 comments)

seller representation: Sellers: Permits Matter - 01/22/19 04:54 PM
Over the weekend, I was viewing homes with a couple that is relocating to our area from out of state.  During my research of the properties on their showing list, one of them stuck out.  In the remarks, it stated that the lower level bathroom would be completed prior to closing.  Since the house has been on the market since late fall 2018, we expected that it would have been completed.  It isn't completed, not even close.  And besides that, there is no permit filed for the adding of that bathroom.  Is the seller a licensed plumber?  Nope.  And what about … (2 comments)

seller representation: Sellers: Should You Accept the First Offer? - 01/16/19 06:13 PM
There are a few schools of thought on this one.  Ultimately, it is the seller's decision on whether or not to disclose to all potential buyers that there is an offer on your home. And whether you should accept the first offer depends on your time on the market and whether the offer is perfect for your situation. Here is the scenario that led to this post:
 
"Our home has been on the market since before Christmas, but we have now moved out and lowered the price.  We have received an offer but there are several showings on our house tonight. Are … (3 comments)

seller representation: Sellers: Is Your Home Pet Friendly? - 01/14/19 07:55 PM
Have you ever thought about your home from a pet owner's point of view?  In our little corner of Iowa, most of the homes that we build and sell have basements.  Sometimes the basements are only really suitable for the laundry and for storage, and sometimes it doubles the size of the house in finished space.  And sometimes, a basement is where you might put the litter box for a cat or a kennel for a dog. 
 
Last summer, I had listed a home that had no basement. But it had a special room off of the kitchen and also contained … (2 comments)

seller representation: Sellers: How Do Buyer Inspections Work? - 01/08/19 01:21 PM
At the point of listing, we will have a discussion about inspections while preparing the property for the market.  Based on the age of the roof, furnace, central air, water heater and other appliances that are included in the sale, a home warranty may be enough to calm any fears a buyer may have.  However, if there are things that are a concern, such as peeling paint on the trim, a roof that is close to needing replacement, or a 30+ year old furnace...more may need to be done as many loans will not allow these issues.  By calling for estimates … (1 comments)

seller representation: Is the Listing Agent the Best One to Show the House? - 09/08/18 09:07 PM
It is not the first time that I have thought about this.  I am not in the practice of performing dual agency, even though it is allowed in Iowa.  In fact, I have sold over 200 homes in the last 15 years and I have only acted as a dual agent less than ten times!  
Since I rarely host open houses on my own listings, I have been able to avoid putting myself in a dual agent position.  For those of you that might not understand what a dual agent is and how it works.....here is your crash course!
 
A dual agent is … (4 comments)

seller representation: The Potential Buyers Talked to the Neighbors - 02/11/18 03:15 PM
This happens quite a bit in my market.  The buyers see a home that they like and they naturally want to know everything that they can about the neighborhood.  This is definitely a buying signal!
 
Now for a real life example, Buyer comes through my listing with their agent.  Based on the agent's perception and conversation with the buyers at the end of the showing, he completed the feedback requested by ShowingTime.  His feedback was that the yard was a dealbreaker for them, but they really liked the house.  Less than an hour later, my seller called me.  They had talked to … (3 comments)

seller representation: Sellers: Don't Forget to Change Your Address! - 01/23/18 02:51 PM
Sellers:  Don't Forget to Change Your Address!
 
A cautionary tale from the other side:
 
Just this week, one of my sellers that closed on their former home with me just after Christmas texted me.  He had accidentally ordered a tool from Amazon and forgot to change the mailing address.  When you live in the same place for a long time you go into auto-pilot with such things.  It wasnt until Amazon told him that it was delivered and he didn't have it that he realized the mistake.  Fast forward to yesterday and the wife did the same thing, except it was through e-Bay.  … (5 comments)

seller representation: Seller Tip #38-Talk to your Neighbors - 08/15/17 10:09 AM
How many of us actually know our neighbors names?  What about their phone numbers?  I bet we might know their children or their pets' names.  Why should we get to know our neighbors?  When you are sellling your home, it can make it a lot easier on you.  Especially if you are already moved into a new home and the house is vacant.  
 
There are things that happen to a vacant home.  Things like lights that get left on after a showing.  Or the screen door might not be completely closed and it is caught by the wind.  Or the person … (4 comments)

seller representation: Buyer's Corner: Why Is that Listing Still Online if it is SOLD? - 03/29/17 12:02 PM
Buyer's Corner:  Why Is that Listing Still Online if it is SOLD?
 
"Hello, this Karen with Lepic-Kroeger.  How can I help you?"
Buyer: "There is a home that I found online that I would like to see.  It is at 123 Main Street."
"Okay.  Let me look up that property....oh.  It is under contract according to the MLS.  Where did you see this home online?"
Buyer:  "Zillow.  I called another agent and they told me that it was sold too.  But I don't understand why it is still showing that it is for sale."
 
As agents, we get these calls all the time.  And I am … (2 comments)

seller representation: Show Me The Money! - 03/20/17 07:46 AM
I have seen a few annoyed "would be" cash buyers stating they are OFFENDED that all these real estate agents just want to see their proof of funds. OFFENDED? Really?!?!?  As though a stranger's word is enough to put them in the car and show them homes?  Sorry, but no.
 
As a listing agent I would be OFFENDED if the buyers agent DIDN'T have proof of funds before they showed my sellers home.  What a colossal waste of everyone's time.  
 
Think about what needs to happen in order for a buyer to see a home on the market including the time that … (4 comments)

seller representation: When a Buyer Comes-a-Knockin', Tell Your Seller What to Do! - 08/29/16 05:30 AM
When a Buyer Comes-a-Knockin', Tell Your Seller What to Do!
 
And I don't mean it in a bossy way...but if the sign goes in the yard and a buyer knocks on the door, does your seller know what to do?
 
My very first listing was a home that I sold for my aunt and uncle.  It was the only listing I had that entire first year, mostly because I didn't seek out sellers.  I LOVED buyers and thought that buyers were the easiest....
 
The sign went in the yard and that night, a buyer knocked on the door and wanted to see the house. … (4 comments)

seller representation: But I Didn't Bring the Checkbook! - 08/25/16 04:18 AM
But I Didn't Bring the Checkbook!
 
It happens.  I counsel my buyers to go to a lender, have their pre-approval letter ready, and bring the checkbook when they view homes.  Why?  Because if you find one that you like and you want to submit an offer, I need to have the earnest money check in my possession.  Now, understand that the check stays with me until there is an accepted offer.  And I will let a buyer know when I provide the check to the listing agent so that if they need to move money around in their account, they are aware.
 
There … (7 comments)

seller representation: It's a Pricing War and A Beauty Contest! - 08/19/16 02:53 AM
It's a Pricing War and A Beauty Contest!
 
In 2008, I attended my first CRS Sellabration in Hawaii.  It was an incredible experience, especially coming off of my best year in real estate and on track to have another incredible year.  One of the most enlightening statements was that today's market is a pricing war and a beauty contest by the late Howard Brinton.  It is still true today.
 
When I meet with a seller, I tell them this:  Buyers will only pay the highest price for the prettiest property.  Great photos will get them in the door, but the offer comes when … (2 comments)

seller representation: Sellers: Are You Ready for Your Close-up? - 08/07/16 12:00 PM
Sellers: Are You Ready for Your Close-up?
 
Before your home enters the market, your home is prepared for the close-ups of the contract.  The first being the professional photos of your home.  How important are these pictures?  These pictures are the first impression of your home.  Bad lighting and clutter can cause buyers to pass by your home and not see it in person.  All of the things on your to-do list that you have not completed?  Those are the things that are going to stand out to potential buyers.  Signs of deferred maintenance is your enemy.
 
Once you receive an offer on … (0 comments)

seller representation: Prepare for Your Home Appraisal. - 07/20/16 02:38 AM
No matter what market you are in, these are great tips for preparing for your appraisal.  After all, you convinced the agent to show it, the buyer to make an offer, and now the appraiser is the one that needs to see your home in the best light as well!  Especially if there were multiple offers and the price was above the list price!  Thank you to Jon for sharing such great information!
 
Keep smiling!
 
Karen
 
 
 
Prepare for Your Home Appraisal.
 

 
 
Getting your home to appraise for the selling price can be nerve-racking for many homeowners – but … (1 comments)

seller representation: Sellers: Showings Can be Risky Business! - 07/16/16 04:04 AM
Sellers: Showings Can be Risky Business!
 
As a listing agent, I have learned and stumbled along the way when it comes to discussing showing expectations with my sellers.  What is a normal for me as a buyer's agent is not everyone's normal procedure, even in the same market.
 
Ultimately, the homeowner hired the listing broker to keep their home safe.  The responsibility falls directly on the listing agent.  So I let my sellers know ahead of time the following:
 
1.  The buyer's agent may or may not leave a business card. (depending on the market)
2.  All or some of the lights may be left … (2 comments)

seller representation: Sellers: Are you planning to SELL? Or EXPIRE? - 07/12/16 02:48 AM
Sellers:  Are you planning to SELL?  Or EXPIRE? 
 
Every day, I spend some time looking at the "hot sheets" on the MLS.  They will show me at a glance the properties that have:
 
An accepted contract
Have closed/sold
Have canceled their listing with the current agent
Have withdrawn their listing from the market
Or have expired.
 
And most of the time, especially on the expired listings, I can see the reason why they failed at selling the first go around.
 
Sometimes, it is the agent that you chose.  Whether it be lack of accurate information or remarks with typos, poorly lit photos or lack of photos, or an unrealistic … (25 comments)

seller representation: Seller Tip: What Type of Financing Should You Offer to Buyers? - 02/02/16 05:45 AM
Seller Tip: What Type of Financing Should You Offer to Buyers?
 
When listing your home for sale, there are many different types of buyers out there and their financing requirements are very different.  Here are some of the common types of financing that we see in the Cedar Rapids/Marion/Iowa City area:
 
Conventional financing:  Typically this is for buyers that have at least 5% down payment and are not usually first time home buyers.  This is the most common and the terms are a fixed rate for 15, 20, or 30 years.  The inspections and appraisal with this type of financing are the easiest … (1 comments)

 
Karen Feltman, Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa (Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group) Rainmaker large

Karen Feltman

Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Cedar Rapids, IA

More about me…

Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group

Address: 4850 Armar Drive SE, Ste B, Cedar Rapids, IA, 52403

Mobile: 319-521-0701

Office: 319-423-4139

Email Me

Whether you are relocating from another state or you are moving within the market area, there is always some adjustments to be made! My focus is on the well-being and safety of your family. A house is very important, but making the Cedar Rapids area your home takes a little more effort. My clients call me long after the closing for advice on a veternarian for their new puppy or the best daycares in the area. Meeting new people is always fun for me and I love my job! Call me if you would like to know what your home is worth in the current market or if you think that you might want to move up to another home somewhere else. We will miss you, but I will happy to get you on your way to your next adventure as quickly as possible!


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