Tag Archives: #winter

OpenListings.com featured blog: Is winter the best time of year to buy a house?

DHREA 20/12/2018
Is winter the best time of year to buy a house?

Even if you’ve never purchased a home before, you’ve probably heard the term “spring market.”

Traditionally, the warmer months were thought of as the only time to get into the real estate market, but that’s not always the case.

If you’re looking to buy a home without all the heat of a potential bidding war, here’s 3 main reasons why this winter just might be the best time to buy:

1. Sellers are more motivated

Calendars become packed around the holidays. Between social events and familial obligations, very few of us would want to add yet another thing to our already busy schedules — especially something as important as selling your home.

As a buyer, you can use this knowledge to your advantage.

Sellers who are willing to market their home during the winter usually need to move right away.

These sellers are moving for a reason — a new job, a progressing relationship, or a family emergency — that’s so important they’re willing to inconvenience themselves during the busiest time of year.

It stands to reason that, if they’re willing to compromise their time, they’ll probably be willing to negotiate on price, too.

While your real estate agent is ultimately the best person to help you decide how to make an offer based on your current market, it’s something to think about.

If coming in under budget is your top priority, buying in the wintertime is probably your best bet.

2. The house’s true colors come out

Let’s be honest: everything looks better on a sunny summer day.

The reason why most agents encourage their clients to sell during spring & summer is because it’s literally the best possible light.

You’re seeing properties in their prime — the most natural light, neutral temperatures, and landscaping in full bloom.

In the winter, sellers don’t have that advantage.

Buyers will know if the heat isn’t working correctly. They’ll know if certain windows are drafty, and with less daylight, there’s more of a chance buyers will see a property after dark.

As the buyer, you should always go into showings with a discerning eye, but shopping around in the wintertime can help make potential deal breakers seem more apparent.

If you’re buying in a cold, rainy, or snowy spot, you’ll want to give extra consideration to some winter-specific details about the home.

How much shoveling, if any, will need to be done if there’s snow? Will you need to contract with someone to bring in oil? Is the house drafty or well-insulated and seale?

Make note of these factors so they can weigh into your decision making process.

3. There’s less competition

Since spring is the dominant time to buy, there might be another unforeseen advantage: less competition.

Many buyers take the “wait until spring” approach and get started with the masses.

Whether it’s kickstarting a New Year’s resolution or timing a house hunt around the kids’ school year, you can bet that the market will be its most crowded in springtime, which means you’ll be fighting over inventory with everyone else who had the same idea.

While inventory can be more limited in the winter, so can the number of potential buyers you’ll be competing against.

Sellers will be grateful to have someone willing to brave the ice, snow, or chill (if you live in that sort of climate) to come see the property.

And since there are fewer interested parties, there’s less of a chance you’ll have to deal with a high-stress multiple offer situation.

This article originally appeared on OpenListings.

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Real Estate Investing w/ Alex Deacon: The Best Time Of The Year To Buy Real Estate

DHREA 01/11/2018

 

In his latest segment, “The Deacon of Real Estate” Alex Deacon discusses the best time of the year to buy real estate! Everyone has an opinion, but what do the numbers say? Does your market’s inclement weather or busy summers affect the supply and demand? Alex breaks down those questions, and much, much more!

 

 

Don’t miss the final Alex Deacon Real Estate Workshop of 2018!!! We’ve opened up the room for extra seating due to our growing attendance. Click below to connect with Alex on MeetUp.com, network with nearly 600 other Real Estate Professionals, and RSVP to the November workshop!

Virtual Bus Tour of Current and past rehabs

Saturday, Nov 10, 2018, 10:00 AM

Hampton Inn Bridgeville
150 Old Pond Rd Bridgeville, pa

28 Members Attending

We have done a few actual bus tours in the past but with the strong turnout I dont like to have to turn down folks due to the high volume of requests. Our next workshop in November we will do a virtual tour of some current and past projects and show you where to spend your money wisely and where you can and cant cut corners in order to stay profita…

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Bin There Dump That: www.PittsburghDumpsterRental.com

 

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Getting Ahead of Simple Winter Projects

DHREA 24/10/2018

doorhinge

Accomplishments, even little ones, go a long way toward a sunny outlook. Fortunately, there are plenty of easy, quick home repair chores you can do when you’re mired in the thick of winter. For max efficiency, make a to-do list ahead of time and shop for all the tools and supplies in one trip. On your work days, put the basics in a basket and carry it from room to room, checking off completed tasks as you speed through them.

What to Look (and Listen) For

In each room, look around and take stock of what needs fixing or improving. Focus on small, quick-hit changes, not major redos. Here are some likely suspects:

Sagging towel rack or wobbly toilet tissue holder.

Unscrew the fixture and look for the culprit. It’s probably a wimpy, push-in type plastic drywall anchor. Pull that out (or just poke it through the wall) and replace it with something more substantial.

Squeaky door hinges.

Eliminate squeaks by squirting a puff of powdered graphite alongside the pin where the hinge turns. If the door sticks, plane off a bit of the wood, then touch up the paint so the surgery isn’t noticeable.

Creaky floor boards.

They’ll shush if you fasten them down better. Anti-squeak repair kits feature specially designed screws that are easy to conceal. A low-cost alternative: Dust a little talcum powder into the seam where floorboards meet…the talcum acts as a lubricant to quiet boards that rub against each other.

Rusty shutoff valves.

Check under sinks and behind toilets for the shutoff valves on your water supply lines. These little-used valves may slowly rust in place over time, and might not work when you need them most. Keep them operating by putting a little machine oil or WD-40 on the handle shafts. Twist the handles back and forth to work the oil into the threads. If they won’t budge, give the oil a couple of hours to penetrate, and try again.

Blistered paint on shower ceilings.

This area gets a lot of heat and moisture that stresses paint finishes. Scrape off old paint and recoat, using a high-quality exterior-grade paint. Also, be sure everyone uses the bathroom vent when showering to help get rid of excess moisture.

Loose handles or hinges on furniture, cabinets, and doors.

You can probably fix these with a few quick turns of a screwdriver. But if a screw just spins in place, try making the hole fit the screw better by stuffing in a toothpick coated with glue, or switching to a larger screw.

Safety Items

You know those routine safety checks you keep meaning to do but never have the time? Now’s the time.

Carbon monoxide and smoke detectors.

If you don’t like waking up to the annoying chirp of smoke detector batteries as they wear down, do what many fire departments recommend and simply replace all of them at the same time once a year.

Ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets.

You’re supposed to test them once a month, but who does? Now’s a great time. You’ll find them around potentially wet areas…building codes specify GFCI outlets in bathrooms, kitchens, and for outdoor receptacles. Make sure the device trips and resets correctly. If you find a faulty outlet, replace it or get an electrician to do it for $75 to $100.

Exhaust filter for the kitchen stove.

By washing it to remove grease, you’ll increase the efficiency of your exhaust vent; plus, if a kitchen stove top fire breaks out, this will help keep the flames from spreading.

Clothes dryer vent.

Pull the dryer out from the wall, disconnect the vent pipe, and vacuum lint out of the pipe and the place where it connects to the machine. Also, wipe lint off your exterior dryer vent so the flap opens and closes easily. (You’ll need to go outside for that, but it’s quick.) Remember that vents clogged with old dryer lint are a leading cause of house fires.

Drain hoses.

Inspect your clothes washer, dishwasher, and ice maker. If you see any cracks or drips, replace the hose so you don’t come home to a flood one day.

Electrical cords.

Replace any that are brittle, cracked, or have damaged plugs. If you’re using extension cords, see if you can eliminate them. For example, replacing that too-short lamp cord with one that’s longer. If you don’t feel up to rewiring the lamp yourself, drop it off at a repair shop as you head out to shop for your repair materials. It might not be ready by the end of the day. But, hey, one half-done repair that you can’t check off is no big deal, right?

 

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Alex Deacon Real Estate Networking Workshops

Carnegie, PA
574 Members

Learn investing from a local expert with a vast amount of experience in the Pittsburgh market. Alex started investing in 1993. We will review hands on examples, analysis, and …

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MACE Property Management: www.PittsburghPropertyManagement.com

Tara Mortgage Services, LLC: www.Tara-MTG.net

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Bin There Dump That: www.PittsburghDumpsterRental.com

 

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Preparing Your Gutters For Autumn and Winter!

DHREA 22/10/2018

gutters

 

Home exterior upkeep has gone from mowers and hoses to rakes and ladders. No other outside component of your house is as susceptible to the conditions of autumn than your gutters. Leaves, twigs, rain, and low temperatures are locked and loaded and ready to put your gutter system to the test. Now that it’s the last week of October and you’ve procrastinated enough, it’s time to officially prepare your gutters for the season!

CLEAN AND INSPECT

The first rule of fall season gutter preparedness is clean and inspect. Unravel your garden hose one last time before it’s tucked into the garage until spring and flush out your gutters and downspouts. Give it a high pressure hosing and then put on your outdoor work gloves to pick up and wipe away any remaining debris. If it’s been a long time since you’ve cleaned your gutters you will want to fill up a bucket with warm water and liquid dish soap and wipe them down with a sturdy sponge. Only when your gutters have been thoroughly cleaned can you perform a proper inspection. The reason for the subsequent inspection? To check for loose brackets/screws, uneven sections, leaks, or any form of excessive wear and tear.

REPAIR WHERE NEEDED

Once you’ve cleaned and inspected your gutters you will have a good idea of where repair is essential. This can’t wait. Buy exact-fit brackets and screws and then replace and secure them where needed. If you’ve uncovered leaks, it may be possible to patch them. For good measure, clean the area surrounding the leak again, but this time using a wire brush and water, then scrub with an abrasive pad once it has dried. Apply plastic roofing cement over the hole with a putty knife while smoothing out the edges of the cement. If the hole is too big, you can apply a strip of aluminum flashing to the area, and seal the edges with the cement. If the repairs are significant enough that they have impacted the appearance of your gutters you can always paint them when the weather forecast permits.

KEEP COLD WEATHER INTRUDERS OUT

Autumn doesn’t just bring falling leaves and rainfall, its cold snap sends rodents (mice, rats, squirrels and raccoons) packing for higher ground. The cozy beds presented by your concave gutters and downspout exit points gives them a place to nest. Pay a visit to your local home and garden store for humane rodent repellent and check your gutters often through the season to ensure they are free from nesting intruders.

INSTALL GUTTER GUARDS

No matter how well you’ve trimmed your trees and raked the yard leaves will still find their way on to your roof. It’s what they do. If you don’t yet have them, autumn is prime time to finally install gutter guards. A gutter guard, is a fitted screen with pinpoints wide enough to allow rainwater to collect within and funnel through while preventing leaves and twigs from entering. A sound leaf protection system will accommodate both vinyl and aluminum gutters, will be maintenance-free, and can be installed on your existing system by a professional without hassle to you, the homeowner.

WHEN IN DOUBT…INSTALL A NEW GUTTER SYSTEM

Ok, so this isn’t the answer for everyone. However, if your inspection, cleaning, and attempts at repair may have hinted that your gutters need replacing in the near future. If that’s the case, then it may as well be now. Delaying the inevitable and waiting another year or two can spell big trouble. One harsh autumn storm could deal the final blow that results in significant gutter damage, damage that will impact your landscape, home exterior, and worse…the interior. The good news, is that you are entering the best season to make your decision on a new system.

Depending upon the height of your roof and exposure to foliage (trees in close proximity) a new standard system may be all that you need to get you through numerous autumns to come. A 5 or 6-inch continuous or eavestrough system can be professionally mounted on your fascia board with relative ease and in time for autumn’s first bite. A 5-inch fascia or eavestrough gutter system (for roofing without a fascia board) can also be installed with minimum turnaround time. Don’t delay your installation…contact a professional as soon as possible, before the weather catches up with the calendar!

 

 

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Alex Deacon Real Estate Networking Workshops

Carnegie, PA
573 Members

Learn investing from a local expert with a vast amount of experience in the Pittsburgh market. Alex started investing in 1993. We will review hands on examples, analysis, and …

Check out this Meetup Group →

Visit our affiliates!

MACE Property Management: www.PittsburghPropertyManagement.com

Tara Mortgage Services, LLC: www.Tara-MTG.net

HDH Settlement Services, LLC: www.HDHTitle.com

Burkhead Insurance Services: Burkhead.Insure

Bin There Dump That: www.PittsburghDumpsterRental.com

 

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#TBT: Snowmageddon 2010

DHREA 08/02/2018

 

Winter storms aren’t uncommon in the Northeast and here in Pittsburgh. One prime example is the massive storm of 2010, known as Snowmageddon.

Now in its eighth anniversary, folks are still reminiscing about the February 2010 storm that wreaked havoc in cities from the West Coast to the East Coast, but most notably the Mid-Atlantic. The storm caused more than 40 fatalities, including deaths in Mexico as well as the United States.

Pittsburgh was the first major city to experience part of the nor’easter’s heaviest snow, raking in 11.4 inches on Feb. 5 and an additional 9.7 inches on the 6th (that’s 21.1 inches in two days)!

Three days later, almost 8 more inches of snow fell over a two-day span.

Snowmageddon is currently ranked as the fourth largest snowstorm on record, just behind the March blizzard of 1993 in which 25.3 inches of snow fell.

The 2010 storm dropped heavy and wet snow on cities across the state, which caused more damage to trees and power lines compared to the infamous blizzard of 1993. Power was out for thousands of people in southwestern Pennsylvania for a week or more.

In the end, the city of Pittsburgh spent several weeks clearing out. The cost of the clean-up from Snowmageddon, as well as the storm immediately following, added up to more than $5 million.

 

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