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Homes for Sale in Minnesota

Finding the Right Housing Solutions as a Senior: What You Need to Know

Buy a home in Minnesota means something different to everyone. It can be the house we’ve lived our whole lives or where we are surrounded by friends and loved ones. If you’re considering what to do now that you’re a senior, here are some different ways you can age in the community of your choice.

Village-to-Village Living

If you are looking for something different, you could consider village-to-village living. There are various types of village living available. One form of such living allows you to age in place with the benefit of community help. You join the village, and in return, you have a group of people to rely on. You may have specific services provided, like transportation and lawn services, for a yearly fee. With this sort of community, you have the benefit of remaining in the home you’ve built while receiving the help you need. Then there are the retirement villages, or specific housing dedicated to retirees. The homes are easier to maintain, and you have a group of people in similar situations to support each other nearby. There are social engagements available, so you don’t need to worry about not having something planned for your weekends. Often, medical care is readily provided and close at hand should it be necessary.

Consider Shared Living

One growing form of housing among seniors is shared living spaces. There are many benefits to sharing a living space; for example, not only will you have companionship and extra security, but you will save financially by having someone else move in, or by moving into a shared home. According to HomeAdvisor, “As a matter of fact, a growing number of baby boomers are turning to shared living as an aging-in-place housing option. A 2014 AARP analysis of census data found approximately 132,000 households and 490,000 women over the age of 50 living with non-romantic peers.” This may allow you to age in place while simultaneously providing the security of communal living. There are websites (such as those listed by Senior Advisor) you can use to find reputable roommates, whether they’re fellow seniors or even young people, like students, looking for affordable accommodation.

Subsidize Your Home

If you are looking for a more manageable solution, you can apply for government assistance in several ways. Section 8 Housing is a form of low-income housing that offers everything from apartments to single-family homes. As a senior, you will be given priority if you qualify. You can even search your area for low-income housing if you are interested in seeing what properties would be available to you locally. This way, you could stay close to family and friends while having some of the financial burden alleviated through government assistance. Your local housing agency can give you more information about what you need to qualify in your area.

Age in Place

Whether you join a village, bring in a roommate, or simply choose to live alone in your home, there are ways you can modify your property to make it more practical as you age. To make doors easier to use, you might have swing away hinges installed. These can help to widen a door without paying to remodel of your home. Grab bars will be invaluable in bathrooms, both by toilets and in showers or tubs. If your threshold has a slight step to it, you may want to level it to prevent trips and make it easier for wheelchair users to enter the home.

There are plenty of options available to baby boomers as retirement draws closer. There are more traditional choices and unique takes on communal living that more and more are trying. After all, one of the greatest things in life is the company we keep, and knowing that you will always have someone there to listen, to chat, and to help when needed.

 

 

Moving With Pets Doesn’t Have to Be Hard. Here’s How to Do it the Right Way

Buying a home in Minnesota is a fun and exciting time for your family, but your dog might not feel the same way. House hunting and listing your own home on the market mean disruptions to your pet’s usual schedule, which can be stressful for pets and owners alike. However, there are a few things you can do to help the move go smoothly for everyone involved.

Selling

Showcasing your home to potential buyers means a lot of strangers coming in and out of your house. This can be overwhelming even for people-loving dogs, and your buyers won’t appreciate a dog jumping, barking, or getting in the way as they try to look around. In fact, pets can deter some buyers from even considering your home. Scheduling a dog walker during showings keeps your dog happy and helps you attract the widest possible pool of buyers. If you need to get out of the house too, turn it into an opportunity for quality time with your pet by heading to a local dog park.

Speaking of buyers that aren’t fans of pets, you should also make sure your house doesn’t have any lingering pet odors before showing it. People often don’t notice odors in their own home, so ask a friend for a second opinion or schedule a carpet and upholstery cleaning just to be safe.. This is a very small price to pay to ensure you’re making a great impression to potential buyers.

Be diligent about sweeping, vacuuming, and cleaning pet waste out of the yard, and consider boarding your pet for the days leading up to a big showing or open house so it’s easier to keep the house clean.

Buying

It’s fun to look for homes for sale while you’re out walking your dog. Rather than risking upsetting realtors or homeowners by bringing your dog to a showing he doesn’t want to be at anyway, leave pets at home when viewing houses. If you do spot the perfect house while out with your pet, jot down the address and realtor’s information so you can follow up.

Moving

After everything is closed and settled, there’s one more step before your move is over. Unfortunately, it’s also the most stressful part for your dog. Pets don’t react well to changes at home, and packing up the house is certain to cause some anxiety. Try to pack gradually, starting with small things, so as to not set off your pet’s alarms. When the movers are due to arrive, make sure your dog is somewhere safely and out of the way until the action is over.

In the new house, you may need to set up a safe area for your dog while he acclimates to the new environment. The ASPCA recommends putting his bed, food, and toys in a single room and provide plenty of affection until he’s feeling confident in his surroundings. This could take a couple of days or longer depending on your pet’s personality.

Don’t have a pet yet but planning on getting one? There’s no reason not to factor future pets into your house hunting. Look for a house with a fenced yard, scratch-resistant flooring, and other pet-friendly features to make life with a pet a little bit easier.

Whether you have a house full of dogs or are planning for your first pet, it’s important to consider how you’ll navigate the responsibilities of pet ownership while coordinating a move. These tips will help keep everyone happy throughout the process, yourself included.

 

Home Improvement Projects That Can Really Boost Resale Values – Sell a Home in Minnesota

Home Improvement Projects to Help You Sell a Home in Minnesota

Getting the highest resale value for your home means correcting any flaws it may have. But not all home improvement projects offer equal bang for the buck. So in this post, we’ll discuss which options are most likely to pay off when it comes time to sell a home in Minnesota.

The Most Essential Room in the House 

The typical bathroom remodel includes replacing the tub, floor and wall tiles, toilet, sink, and vanity while updating the fixtures. Costs for this type of job average $10,500, according to Home & Garden TV’s website. But the investment typically increases resale prices by $10,700.00, allowing you to recoup over 100% of what you paid.

Everyone Wants a New Kitchen

Cooking and sharing meals are among the most basic functions of any home. Maybe that’s why so many buyers list the kitchen as one of the most important rooms they consider most when house hunting. A completely reworked kitchen usually recoups 75 percent of its cost at resale time, according to Zillow. But you may be able to get away with more modest renovations like replacing the flooring and upgrading the appliances. Either way, this is one room that can make or break the sale for sure.

It’s What’s on the Outside That Counts

A well-landscaped home will almost always fetch a better price than one with an anemic-looking lawn or other exterior problems. So by all means consider upgrading your yard. But beware of overdoing this area. Some buyers may look at gorgeous flower beds, pristine grass, perfectly manicured shrubs, and ornamental trees and think, “Wow, the last thing I want to do is maintain all that stuff!” As with so many things, moderation is key when its time to sell a home in Minnesota.

Siding Is Never a Side Issue

Your home’s siding is one of its most critical features, for reasons that go well beyond aesthetics. A home with its siding in poor shape will rarely fetch more than a bargain-basement price, no matter what shape everything else is in. The endless debate about vinyl vs. wood vs. fiber cement aside, here’s the thing you must always remember: siding sells. So make sure yours is in good shape.

A Roof Over Your Head

We left the most important factor for last. A home’s purpose, above all else, is to shelter you and your loved ones from the elements. This makes the roof the most important part of your home and also the part that buyers (and home inspectors) will consider most closely.

Few homeowners have the skills and equipment needed to effect major roof repairs, making the skills of a pro necessary. Sadly, while many roofing contractors are competent and honest, a few are incompetent, unscrupulous, or both. Here are some signs that you’re dealing with a shady outfit:

  1. If it demands either full payment or a giant down payment upfront. You’ll likely never hear from the company after it gets its hands on your money.
  2. If someone comes to your door trying to sell roofing services. Legitimate contractors almost never use this approach.
  3. If the contractor’s estimate comes in way below those of the competition. This is another tactic some outfits use to get your money as fast as possible. If they do the job at all, then they will probably hit you with all sorts of hidden charges. Remember, if something sound too good to be true, then it probably is.

When you decide to sell a home in Minnesota, you will come to realize that the real estate market is very competitive here. But the tips in this post can increase your odds of a speedy and profitable sale. Even more important, they can help ensure that both parties are happy with the final deal, which is what ethical transactions are all about. Good luck and happy selling!

How to Avoid 10 Major Home Selling Mistakes

 

  • Paint the guest room and fix that leaky faucet!
  • It’s natural to be excited about selling your home. You’re making a big change, and want to set the gears in motion. But rushing to put your home on the market and neglecting small changes and repairs can hurt you in the long run. 
  • Pump up your curb appeal
  • Once your home is sparkling on the inside, it’s time to make sure the exterior will make passers-by stomp on the brakes and say ‘WOW! I’d love to own that home!’.  
  • Open your home to the possibilities
  • Buyers want to imagine their future in a home. While your family pictures and personal touches are beautiful and meaningful, they also keep a buyer from seeing themselves and their family in your home.  
  • Use a real estate agent, and be picky!
  • On average, sellers that use an agent sell their homes more quickly and for more money than sellers that try to go it alone.  Experts, especially those at The Antonov Group, can help simplify the complicated process, and guide you through home preparation, pricing, showings, offers, negotiations, inspections, closing and more.  
  • Know the true value of your home
  • Overpricing or underpricing your home could cost you tens of thousands of dollars. Many factors go into determining a home’s value, and online estimates or previous sales prices often leave out important considerations. The Antonov Group has local market knowledge and sales expertise, in addition to plenty of resources, and can help you find your perfect price point. 
  • Make sure your photos deserve their own wall at the Louvre
  • Invest in great photography, because most home-searches begin online. Gorgeous pictures will attract more buyers, and more buyers means higher offers! 
  • Leave for showings, and bring the kids and Fido
  • It’s hard to leave your home knowing that a total stranger is going to pass judgement, especially with them not knowing how beautifully the sun hits the rear windows or how much better the new sink is. However, when you and your loved ones are at the house, it can make buyers feel like intruders in your home, or like they’re being rushed and can’t ask important questions. 
  • Try not to take it personally
  • At the end of the day, this is a business transaction. When a buyer lowballs you or criticizes your home, it’s not an attack on your sense of style or character. You made your home exactly what you always wanted, and buyers just want to do the same. 
  • Cross your t’s and dot your i’s on your disclosures before closing
  • Nothing sours a sale like incomplete disclosures. It’s vital that buyers know EVERYTHING about the home before the final moments of the transaction, because a closing room is no place to hash out furnace repairs or junk removal. The Antonov Group can guide you through their comprehensive set of detailed disclosure forms to help ensure nothing is forgotten! 
  • Enjoy the process while anticipating obstacles
  • This is a major life change, and while you can do everything in your power to make things go smoothly, sometimes life puts a bump in the road. Being prepared both financially and emotionally for whatever comes your way can make selling your home into the best possible experience!

5 Buyer Mistakes and Ideas

How to Avoid Five Mistakes That Home Buyers Make

  • Make sure to use a buyer’s agent

When you visit a potential home, the agent showing the house represents ONLY the sellers. It’s like walking into a lion’s den with a skirt and blouse made of steak. Not only will a buying agent protect YOUR interests, but they can offer invaluable insight into the housing market and buying process.

 

  • Don’t shop for homes before you’re preapproved

Buying a home is an exciting and promising adventure! Setting your heart on a home without knowing what you can afford can lead to heartbreak, and put a negative spin on your entire experience.

 

  • Always search for first-time buyer programs and grants

There are many opportunities to receive tax breaks, discounts, bonuses, down payment assistance, waived closing costs and more specifically for first-time homes buyers! Make sure to check the HUD website for state programs, in addition to county and city sites.  Or just call The Antonov Group, because our experts know the ins and outs of these benefits and are happy to guide buyers through every step of the process!

 

  • Never neg a potential home

Acting unimpressed and aloof is an age-old buyer’s tactic, but it has no place in home shopping! How would you feel if someone came into your home and made nothing but rude remarks? Negging doesn’t lower a house’s price, it just causes sellers to refuse a sale and shoo you right out of their home.

 

  • Don’t rely solely on online home value estimates

A quick search of available properties will often take you to sites with general estimates on a property’s value. These estimates are created by machines using cold statistics and numbers, and don’t take factors like neighborhoods, schools, style and personal needs into consideration. Relying solely on these ball-park figures can lead to vastly overpaying for a home, or missing out on a great opportunity because of an incorrect estimate. Real estate agents, especially those at The Antonov Group, understand the needs of individual buyers and the nuances of each home, and can help you save time, money and stress!

 

 

Handy Spring-Cleaning Tips for Homeowners Looking to Sell

Spring brings warmer weather and the rebirth of nature. It also brings out the home buyers. Whether you’re just about to put your home on the market for the first time or re-listing and resetting after the winter, your home is probably in dire need of a good spring cleaning. And like most things that have to do with selling your home, spring cleaning is something better tackled with a solid game plan. Here are some tips.

 

First things first: eliminate the extras

An inevitable part of spring cleaning is filling up trash bags and donation containers with your belongings. You can’t really clean until you get out the clutter. Sometimes, it’s tough to make decisions about what to get rid of—we’re all pretty attached to our stuff! But you can make it easier by starting with everything in your home you aren’t currently using or that you have extras of. Begin in the closets. Donate all of your unwanted/unused/non-fitting clothes. Ditch your extra coat hangers (you don’t need 300). Then move to the kitchen. All of those tupperware lids without homes? Toss them. Click here for more tips on what you can throw away right now to make your cleaning job more manageable.

Create a storage plan

Showing a house while living in it is never going to be easy, but it’s possible if you have a plan for organization and storage. Case in point: a room can have 20 of your kids’ toys in it and look like a disaster, or the same room can have the same 20 toys in it and look clean. How? It’s all about organization. Investing in bins and baskets for oft-used rooms in your home will allow you to store all of your toys, pet supplies, books, electronics, etc. without having to find a true storage space for them. Invest in attractive containers where you can quickly toss stuff—it’s that simple. Click here for some good tips.

Learn how to deep clean

A good spring cleaning shouldn’t be cursory; it should be deep and comprehensive. Many of us have never truly deep cleaned anything. This is problematic for staging a home for sale, as it’s the little things that can make all the difference. Basic cleaning may fail to remove some grease and other particulates from your kitchen cabinets, countertops, and stainless steel, for example. Those need a deep clean. You don’t want a prospective home buyer finding grime in your bathroom tile or a dirty oven either. And your carpets? A quick vacuuming isn’t going to cut it. Here’s a good outline for how to deep clean your entire home.

 

Hire some temporary help

Maybe you’re not the type of person who wants to have a full-time house cleaner. Maybe it’s a financial thing or something else. Whatever your particular aversion, it doesn’t matter now. You’re spring cleaning to prep your home for sale, so you need all the help you can get. Make your spring cleaning initiative ongoing with a semiweekly housekeeper. You can schedule a big clean at the end of every week and then at the beginning of the week, presumably after an open house on the weekend. Before you hire a housekeeper, check out these tips for the interview.

It helps to think about your spring cleaning in three stages: decluttering, organizing, and deep cleaning. And you definitely need to go about it in that order. The first two steps will make the third one possible, and if you get some help, you can be sure to stay on top of things. Your realtor is sure to thank you for making spring cleaning a priority.

 

 

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