Nelson Zide
ERA Key Realty Services | 508-277-7794 | nelson@nelsonzide.com


Posted by Nelson Zide on 3/3/2021

Photo by Arek Socha via Pixabay 

In a bid to afford homes in high-value areas, many homeowners turn to income from short-term rentals to cover a high mortgage payment. You can benefit from this option with some caveats:

  • Location really matters. A lot. You might advertise your home as near the coast when itís really 20 miles inland and get a few bites. But eventually, the reviews catch up with you, and you lose out. Be honest about where your rental sits. Market what is available: access to public transportation, quiet parks, sports arenas, theme parks, etc. only if they truly are accessible.
  • Consider hosting rather than leaving your home to strangers. That means you stay on the property while they are there. Youíre in control of who comes and goes. Your renters canít sneak in a dozen of their buddies without paying for them.
  • Make sure your HOA and municipality allow it. Many homeowners associations explicitly forbid subletting or short-term rentals, so if thatís your plan, read those pesky covenants, conditions and restrictions (CCRís) before you buy. Municipalities also have codes regarding hospitality properties. Many require licenses, permits or fees, and some require occupancy taxes on the nights guests rent your home.
  • Your homeownersí insurance coverage may not protect you from damage or liability when youíre using your home as a business. Talk to your insurance agent before you post your home online and pay the extra premiums to make certain youíre covered.

Before you decide to turn your home into a short-term rental, know the rules and the risks or the rewards may not be worth the trouble. Your real estate professional is your best resource for discovering properties in your area suitable for a short-term rental, so make that phone call today.




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Posted by Nelson Zide on 2/24/2021

Photo by Mohamed Hassan via Pixabay

If you're like many Americans, your home is your biggest asset. And if you're thinking of selling your home to use the profits for a new home, sending the kids off to college or simply adding it to a retirement fund, there are a few things you may want to avoid to make sure your home sells. 

 Setting the Price too High

Some sellers make the mistake of thinking their home is worth more than comparable properties. A lot of times, living in the home and becoming attached to it may cause an overestimation of the value of upgrades or dismissal of the lower price tag of similar homes with similar features.

When you price a house too high, though, the property may stay longer on the market and go through several price reductions before it finally attracts interested buyers. And if you happen to be in a new home already, you might be paying two mortgage payments while waiting for a buyer to place an offer. Putting the right price on your home helps ensure buyer interest and a quick sale.

Neglecting to Order a Pre-inspection

Some buyers are open to fixing problems, but your cost during the negotiation phase may be significantly higher than it would have been if you hired a contractor to fix any preexisting issues.

A way to solve this problem is to order your own inspection before you put your house on the market. This is also a great way to establish buyer trust, showing that you are transparent about the house's issues when you give them the report or show the report of the issues being fixed.

Going Overboard on Presale Renovations

You love your home, and you want to prove to the buyer that it is a gem. But sinking too much money into presale renovations can mean spending money that you may not get back during the negotiations. You also want to be careful that you're not spending your renovation budget on cosmetic enhancement when the house needs structural improvements. That is another excellent reason to invest in a home inspection prior to putting your house on the market. 

Failing to Choose the Right Agent

The real estate agent you choose to sell your home makes all the difference -- and with buyers' agents requesting up to 6 percent in closing fees, it's important to make sure you find someone who will work hard for you.

What should you look for? Good chemistry tops the chart, since you need to be able to trust your agent to act in your best interest. Other important factors are familiarity with the local market, experience selling houses in your price range, access to good marketing databases, and evidence of a strong network.

Ready to get started with the home selling process? Contact me, and we'll get the ball rolling!




Tags: home seller   selling  
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Posted by Nelson Zide on 2/17/2021

Statistics vary, but according to two credible sources, 44% of Americans own a dog. That means that if you don't own a dog, there's a strong chance one or both of your next door neighbors do!

Why are dogs such a permanent fixture in so many households? Unconditional love is probably the number one reason most people bring a dog into their lives, but enhanced health, home security, and companionship are others.

Health benefits: If you have a dog in your family, you probably already know the power of the "w" word. From a dog's perspective, there are few experiences that outrank the joy of going for a walk with their master! It not only provides a daily bonding experience for both dog and owner, but it's also an opportunity to introduce a moderate amount of exercise into your life -- assuming your doctor approves! While running, athletics, or weight training is not up everyone's alley (or even medically advisable), taking a leisurely stroll in the neighborhood can be a great way to stretch your legs, get some fresh air, and enjoy bonding moments with your four-legged companion! It's also a proven fact that petting or playing with a dog (or cat) can help lower your blood pressure and distract you from the cares and worries of everyday life.

Teaching moments: Not only do most kids love playing with pets, but they can also benefit from learning pet responsibility, kindness, and compassion.

Home security: While it's not an infallible method of burglarproofing your house, having a dog almost always serves as a deterrent. Most dogs are inherently protective of their territory (and loved ones) and will generally bark if they sense an intruder on the property or at the front door. Since one of the last things burglars want to do is call attention to themselves, a barking dog can definitely help keep the bad guys away!

Companionship: Dogs aren't the greatest conversationalists in the world, but they can be a very comforting presence when you're reading a book, watching TV, or relaxing at home. Many also love to join you for a ride in the car, a walk in the neighborhood, or a run in the park.

While dog ownership is not for everyone, more than 40% of us could not imagine life without our canine companion(s)! They do require a lot of attention, patience, and training, but the rewards are usually well worth the effort.

If you're considering getting a dog, you can gather a lot of helpful information about dog breeds, barking tendencies, temperament, shedding, how much exercise different breeds require, and other characteristics from the American Kennel Association. To help ensure a mutually satisfying relationship between you and your dog, it also pays to sign up for a dog obedience class and go online to learn about dog behavior, crate training, and health maintenance.




Tags: Dog Lovers   pets   dogs  
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Posted by Nelson Zide on 2/10/2021

Photo by ElasticComputeFarm via Pixabay

Your HVAC system keeps everything cool and comfortable, but only if it is working properly. You don't have to have any repair or DIY skills to determine if your air conditioner is struggling, just look for one or more of the signs below. Finding problems now, at the first sign of trouble, can prevent costly repairs later -- and keep you more comfortable at home, too. Be on the lookout for sounds, odors and even unusually large energy bills, and you'll be able to determine just how healthy your HVAC system is.

Unusual or loud noises: If your air conditioner suddenly sounds louder than normal or seems to be working very hard, it's time to have it seen. Loud noises, including rattling, grinding and squealing are all signs that your system is not working efficiently and that it should be seen.

Soaring energy bills: If your energy bill spikes or even has a steady, ongoing increase, it could be a sign that your air conditioner is working too hard to comfort your home. Some increase in energy use is normal during the summer months, since you'll be using the system more, but a bill that seems shocking should prompt you to investigate your HVAC system and see if it's to blame.

Mildew or musty odor: If your home smells even slightly of mildew, then your air conditioning system should be seen. Mold and mildew can circulate through your home, powered by the air conditioner; this will impact your home's scent and your indoor air quality, too. Masking the odor with scents is not enough, you should have your system inspected to make sure it is safe to use.

You're too hot: If the air conditioner is constantly running, but you are still too warm, you should have it checked out. In this case, you're paying for the electricity to power the HVAC, but not getting any benefit from it. In many cases, a simple repair is all that is needed to correct this problem, so you can get comfortable again in record time.

Your system is older than you are: Older homes have legacy heating and cooling systems that could have been installed when the home was built. They may still operate, but they are likely not as efficient as a modern system. If your system is aging, it simply won't be as comfortable as a newer model and is likely to need repairs in the future. Look for the ENERGY STAR label; if your system has it, you have a more modern, efficient air conditioner. If it doesn't, you're likely spending too much each month, and risking a costly repair.

Any of these signs should trigger an inspection for your system. In most cases, you'll find that a tuneup is an affordable way to ensure your HVAC is running well and that your home is in great shape. Keeping up with maintenance on your HVAC ensures your home stays comfortable and that you are ready to entertain guests at a moment's notice.





Posted by Nelson Zide on 2/3/2021

If you are thinking of buying a home, you probably have been getting your finances for some time. First-time homebuyers need the right information to avoid making big mistakes when they purchase their homes. The leap into home ownership is a big one, and youíll want as much information with you along for the ride. Below, youíll find a crash course on mortgages for first-time homebuyers. 


Think Ahead


Every homebuyer needs to prepare ahead of time for the process to be smooth. Research different lenders in your area and see what their rates are. If you talk to your lender about your goals and what type of loans youíre looking for, youíll understand all of the costs that youíll face ahead of time. You donít want any surprises when it comes to signing a contract for a home.


Every Mortgage Is Different


Itís easy to think that all home loans are created equal, but they arenít. The diversity in types of home loans is why you need to research and meet with a lender ahead of time. Talk to your real estate agent and see who they suggest. Your agent is a useful resource because they want your entire transaction to go smoothly for everyone involved. There are many different kinds of mortgages, and you need to make sure youíre getting the loan thatís right for you. Be sure you understand the specifics of each loan before you sign on.       


What You Need In Order


Before you even head into the home buying process, there are a few things that youíll need including:


  • Cash for a downpayment
  • A budget
  • Knowledge of all of your finances
  • Where youíd like to look for a home
  • An idea of how much you can spend on a home
  • Information to get pre-approved including tax returns, proof of income, and bank statements


Once you have saved up cash for a downpayment, itís time to take a look at your budget. Can you afford a monthly mortgage payment in the price range that you hope to buy? How much money will you have left over each month? Should you adjust your expectations? 



Youíll need to save up a bit of cash before you know that youíre ready to buy a home. Itís recommended that you have at least 20 percent of the purchase price of a home to put down towards your loan. The more you put down, the lower your monthly payments will be on the mortgage. So saving is the next big step in securing a mortgage in the smoothest possible way.     




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