Archive for home

Most Contemporary New Home in Tallahassee

Posted in Debbie Kirkland, New construction, real-estate with tags , , , , , on October 20, 2009 by realtordebbie
Trendy Home Features

Trendy Home Features

New construction is one of my specialties as a Realtor in Tallahassee and I am always amazed with the creativity and thought that most people put into custom construction. Choosing a contractor that understands a client’s fundamental goals and then works through the details of planning and design by incorporating those often intricate details into the home is paramount to a succesful working relationship.

This home at 6475 Tracy Lane in Tallahassee is a perfect example of a customer with very specific tastes and ideas for their home. Modeled after homes in their Native Australia and their lifestyles as athletes and outdoor enthusiasts, the home features amenities suited to an active lifestyle and their love of trendy, modern conveniences.

Features in this home include:

  • Over 3600 sq.ft. of living space
  • Custom made cabinetry with granite counter-tops
  • Porcelain and Glass Vessel Sinks
  • Custom shaped Stainless Bar, Laundry Table and Fireplace Surround
  • 9 ft. Triple Sliding glass doors along the rear of home offering near floor to ceiling views of the pool area and fenced yard.
  • Brick Accent wall in Master Suite
  • Master Spa Bath with Slate Roman Shower with 5 shower heads!
  • Theater or Home Gymnasium Room with Wet Bar

For more information on contemporary, trendy home and custom details Click Here to see this beautiful new home in the gated subdivision of The Ridge at Velda Dairy.

Tallahassee Homes – Marketing Plans That Work

Posted in For Buyers, For Sellers, Real Estate Advice with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 19, 2009 by realtordebbie
Tallahassee Homes - A marketing plan that works for sellers and buyers.

Whetehr you are a seller or a buyer, interview your Realtor. Ask the right questions and make sure you can commmunicate with your Realtor. Call Debbie Kirkland, Realtor and referral agent, for a referral to a professional Realtor in your area. 850-212-0440

Interviewing Realtors?  Can we all agree the ulitmate goal of selling a home is ….to get it SOLD!  Statistics show that the majority of buyers will see a home in the first three weeks, after that, “The thrill is gone,” so to speak. 

So, let’s look at a Realtor’s role in a transaction and what it takes to get a home exposed and to make a wise investment  in today’s market.

Multiple Listing Service

  • In our  MLS system, a listing is posted and remains “NEW” for four days! Wow,.. 4 days to show up on the “hotsheet.”  That’s the area most savvy agents look to when they wake up in the AM and before they head out the door. (but face it, busy agents hit the groud running..so let’s hope they don’t miss your “creampuff!”) The hotsheet posts new listings, price reductions and status changes of listings. It’s important to review this, especially if you are looking for properties that are “buyer specific.” By that I mean, you buyer is very specific (picky). It’s ok… it’s a big purchase, buyers should be specific! You want to make sure that your listing is ready to go with as many photos as allowable and a video is shortly following!
  • After those 4 days are up..then what? Again, it’s there, searchable, so make sure it can be found by use of pictures and video and that the description will entice buyers!

Websites

  • Most Realtors have websites, but content is king, so a website that reaches into the community, showcases area information, neighborhood information and features listings with visual and video appeal is what will reach today’s buyers. 87% of buyers begin their serach on the Internet, and most of those buy homes they have found on the Internet. Websites with photos and videos really bring in the visitors!
  • If you’re searching online or in a magazine and find a home with just one picture.. a fuzzy one at that, what conclusion will you draw? If you need to see details and can’t get to the listing, will your Realtor to preview for you? (sellers,..are you listening?)

Local Exposure

  • Is your Realtor a wallflower?  The real estate industry is about networking. I seriously don’t think I’ve met a successful Realtor yet who is bashful, reclusive or introverted. I’m not saying your Realtor should be the class clown, but certainly you want them to talk about your home, share your listings with those who may just have the perfect buyer for that property!
  • There are many ways for your Realtor to showcase your home to other Realtors. Local Board of Realtor marketing meetings. We have them once a month..what a great time to talk about your new listings! Realtor socials and community events, broker open houses, office and top-producer caravans. Yes, they work! People remember homes they see, and they fit the home to those “specific” buyers we mentioned earlier!
  • Don’t forget Social Media tools and networking. In today’s world, if you want to grow a business, any business, people must be able to find you, to see your product and get information with the click of a mouse. If a Realtor is leveraging social networks, people are getting their message, they are exposing products regularly to today’s buyers.
  • I think most would agree.. Realtors are the most social creatures on earth! Most balance home, work, family, community… and they all seem to compliment each other. Realtors are working most all the time, even when it looks like it’s completely unrelated events! (just ask the customer I met last night in line at the movies!) Pick one who likes to have fun and is involved! Remember, Realtors are people too, respect their time just as you would your family or co-workers!

Media

  • Choosing which media is effective today is a challenge. Measuring the effectiveness versus the cost of advertising is very important. A wise agent carefully times advertising  between print media, radio and tv, web exposure and niche database marketing. It’s a combination of all these mediums that are the most effective.
  • Realtors with specialty niche markets may be the best choice for a specfic type property, or in smaller areas it may be the realtor with the biggest tool box, the agent with the tools to attact every type buyer that would be a great fit for your home.

Communication

  • This probably should have been first on the list! What is your preferred method of contact. If you are one-on-one, then let your Realtor know this. If you are a busy student or business person, perhaps e-mail  is best for your updates. If you are on the go, mobile technology, texting and e-mail from the road may work best for you.
  • No matter what method you choose, regular communication, market updates, showing feedback and product information is critical to your success, both for buyers and sellers. Ask your Realtor for a communication plan!

There are many great Realtors from which to choose today. Take time to interview. If you are a buyer, avoid the luck of the draw by simply calling on signs. Do your homework, buying and selling a home deserves sound, educated and professional information and resources. Find a Realtor who will give you the best service as you enter your next real estate transaction.

Debbie Kirkland, Realtor  .  Armor Realty of  Tallahassee .  www.HomeSalesofTallahassee.com

Just Looking Back For A Moment

Posted in Debbie Kirkland, Habitat For Humanity, Random, recreation, Tallahassee with tags , , , , , , , on June 23, 2009 by realtordebbie

I’m not sure why I’m reminiscing more this week than in times past. I’m exhausted, and it’s only Tuesday.  Perhaps it’s the 100+ degree temperatures we have been having in Tallahassee.. or possibly related to the first day off I had on Sunday, the first in more than about 6 months.  I spent that day with my folks,..floating in the pool in the home where I was raised. For the first time in a very long time, I put business down for a day, and I was as relaxed as I was when I was a child.

Home

Home

I had a few thoughts that I just needed to spill. As far back as I can remember, I have had a roof over my head. My father had a job, my mom made dinner at night and my sisters and I played in a yard,…every day.  I don’t remember hearing about famine, about unemployment, about the threat of socialism or foreclosures being on the rise. I don’t remember a time when there was a need in my not-so-long-ago rural community, that families did not gather to “tend” to those in need.

As far back as I can remember, people had work to do, suppose that’s why I dont mind it or even think about the hours I put in as a single mom. I was raised in a middle class.. or what would now be considered lower middle class family I suppose. Plain and simple, everyone I was exposed to had a work ethic and a sense of moral dignity and community. Times may have been “tight,” but there was food on my table. (Much of it home-grown or given to us in trade for work my dad may have done for someone. I’ve put up more peas and corn than most have seen!)

When I look around today, I see a different society. Kids don’t play outside much anymore..they don’t build forts in the woods and they are never out of their parent’s watchful eyes. Father’s and mothers both work, and spend much of their time involved in costly night-time activities that are deemed “necessary” for physical and emotional development. I see the elderly shoved into homes because they have no families to care for them or either the children are fighting over who must “take on the job” of caring for them.

I’m not feeling very sorry right now for a few people I know who are using up their sick time before they loose it.. or complaining about kids driving them crazy whining and complaining.  I think we’ve done a few things wrong along the way, plain and simple. Perhaps it’s not so bad to look back once in a while.. to sit and reminisce with the old folks, or to even look back to where we were a few decades ago.

The Tallahassee Board of Realtors is starting another Habitat For Humanity House in the fall. My pledge is $100 for each closing I have and to work on our build days. I can’t think of anywhere else I’d rather be really. Every home-owner of these houses that I have met, has been hard-working, many raising their own children, grandchildren or someone else’s children. It takes a village, it means a home. I think most of us “get-it” now that this could be any one of us. What we don’t know is who would be there if we fell.

These may very well be “the good times.” These may be the times we gain control of our lives and reach out to those around us once again. Sure  makes you think, huh. Today, I’m simply grateful for the 100 hour work week and the homemade blackberry jelly my friend Jay dropped off  last week. Time to return a favor.

Make Mine a Double!

Posted in For Buyers, Market Trends, Real Estate Advice with tags , , , , , , , on April 17, 2009 by realtordebbie

It’s great when a plan comes together,..but when it comes together twice in one family, that is even more exciting! Great Financing terms and loan programs are making home ownership affordable and possible!

Case #1. Sweet young couple, hoping to be engaged, but committed to purchase a home together begin their search for their “first home”.  In this case, as with many first time home buyers, both of these young professionals are working and contributing to a household income. They are not making a killing, but are able to afford car payments, nights out, vacations and a few of the simple pleasures in life. Their goal however is to be married soon, and to acquire a home. Enter, Realtor Debbie.

The first step was qualifying,.. the second was finding a home with land.. a little piece of the American dream! Looking for land is easy, as we are surrounded by plantations, unrecorded rural subdivisions and estate properties. A small subdivision just outside the city limits fit their needs. Paved roads, half to one acre lots, only 25 home-sites and a new construction home, Sycamore Ridge was the answer! The best news.. this home qualifies for the US Rural Housing Home Loan… 100% financing with NO Mortgage insurance! With a builder willing to pay closing costs, the couple ended up bringing $28.07 to closing! What would be their down payment became money for a fence and some needed furnishings! Even more good news.. now construction like this is hard to find in Tallahassee..ergo..their value just escalated! 

Affordable NEW Homes with 100% Financing

Affordable NEW Homes with 100% Financing

Within days of closing,.. I was given the best post-closing gift ever.. a referral. The homeowner has a brother, with a wife and twin toddlers.. and they want to move up as well.  Same process..same loan product.. and a successful closing on a home with immediate equity!

Today I had dinner with these kids.. all 4 and the twins..their treat! It seems they both received their first time home-buyer credit money.. and took me to dinner! What a complete and utter surprise! This makes it all worthwhile!

To find out if you qualify for a rural housing 100% financing loan e-mail me at Debbie Kirkland. To read more about the First time home buyer credit for 2009 Click Here.

p.s. If you are wondering about Realtors getting customers in over their heads with 100% loan products..don’t forget:  REALTORS are bound by a code of ethics…I take that seriously. Counseling home buyers and working with customers for AFFORDABLE homes and SMART purchases is  both my business and my obligation. My buyers are well prepared and represented!

Will Customers Hire Me from an Open House?

Posted in Debbie Kirkland, For Realtors, Real Estate Advice, Realtor, Tallahassee with tags , , , , , , on March 15, 2009 by realtordebbie
 

200187506-001 Nearly every Sunday I sit open houses for my sellers here in Tallahassee, FL.  While the goals of open houses are to expose a home to potential buyers, often times it is an opportunity for buyers to meet hardworking, professional and educated Realtors. It’s the perfect time to engage perfect strangers.  It’s also a time to let your personality shine through. When I am working with newer agents I try to remind them, not only must you be the most educated “kid” in the industry, but the most animated, exuberant and genuine Realtor they will see during their open house tour day.  It’s often your one shot to shine above the rest of your competition.

 Buyers have more homes to look at today than ever before. They are also going to meet more Realtors than ever. How are you going to stand out? Do you need a wiener-mobile, (although I have asked my kids for years to submit me for “Pimp My Ride” – I wouldn’t refuse!), a musical business card, or top hat and tap shoes? It’s really not that hard. Being prepared, and being able to recognize 3 simple kinds of open house visitors are all you really need. (That and a good breakfast!)

 

 I pretty much think you can classify open house buyers in three categories:

 

 First, Buyer’s who are just looking, we know them as the “tire-kickers”, not to be insulting, but basically, they are just “kicking” around thoughts in their heads. TireKickerPerhaps they are looking for ideas from new construction on how to fix up their homes, perhaps they are weighing their options of up-sizing or down-sizing. I love these folks! They are the ones that often enter with closed minds. not intentionally of course, but hopefully leave with something of value. In this instance, I provide a simple service whether a summation of industry news, market conditions, or at the very least a free valuation of their home. I believe in “remembrances, some call them freebies. I want these folks to remember me for taking the time to provide them with a service. A list of your services is a necessity for these folks. A perfect Brochure: “My Full-Time Realtor Service Portfolio.”

 

 Secondly, I see telmer-bugsstandoffhe standoffs. They rush in, pull back at “hello,” and rush out.  These will be the hardest customers for someone to deal with.  They do not understand Realtors, they are misinformed and often have pre-conceived notions whether from a bad experience or a predatory salesperson from the past, or they simply know it all anyway. Best to let these folks pass through and continue to call on every sign, they do not value your services or your time. A perfect flyer for these customers on the fly: “Why Use a Realtor and on the back, “How Realtors Get Paid.”  

 

 Thirdly, there are the wide-eyed wonders. Generally, these folks are excited, easily enamored and also easily disappointed. They want a new home, but perhaps bungee-jumper1have not been introduced to Realtors properly. They don’t have a clue how to begin a transaction or how to work with a Realtor. These folks are also your Easter eggs. These brightly shining, colorful folks are the ones you want to collect in your basket and watch over. With proper guidance, they will hatch into to happy, grateful customers who will produce more happy, grateful customers. For these folks, it is all about subtlety and education.  Have the tools they need on hand. The perfect package for these folks: An appointment card (for your Buyer Orientation), Why use a Realtor and how a Realtor Get’s Paid, A Buyer’s guide to FLORIDA Real estate (what to know about your state’s insurance, how your State Association is working to protect homeowner’s real estate interests), a first time home-owners package, and give them as much information as possible on a frequent basis. Register them to your website, your blogs; put them in an automated listing notification system. Call them when they get these notifications, review the listing that was sent and give them feedback before your ever show it. Let them know you know about this property even if you have to call the other agent to discuss it ahead of time. These are the customers that will eagerly research on their own, weed out the listings that are not of interest, and take your cards to other Realtors when they visit open houses, because… you will have trained them to do so! After all, it is great for customers to hear from other agents that their Realtor is a great Realtor! (I hope you reciprocate this!)

 

So, organize your thoughts and materials prior to your open house. Put your game face on for the kickers, bring the shield for the darts flying around the standoffs, and be ready to dance with the wide-eyed wonders! Ask yourself, “Would I pick me?” If not, well, that’s another article.