Home DecorHome StagingHoweowner ResourceSelling Your Home March 13, 2023

The Ultimate Guide to Successful House Showings

Hey there, future home sellers! As a real estate expert and blogger, I’ve seen firsthand how important it is to prepare your home for successful house showings. Selling your home can be an exciting yet nerve-wracking experience, and you want to ensure that you make a great impression on potential buyers. That’s why I’m here to share my personal tips on how to get your home ready for successful house showings.

During the house showing process, potential buyers visit your property and decide if it’s the right fit for them. Making a great first impression is crucial, and it starts with preparing your home. Trust me, putting in a little bit of effort and time upfront can go a long way in helping you sell your home quickly and at the best possible price.

In this blog post, I’ll walk you through the steps I took to prepare my listings for successful house showings. From decluttering and deep cleaning to staging and enhancing curb appeal, I’ve got you covered. I’ll also share some final tips to help you make your home stand out during a showing and create a positive experience for potential buyers.

So, grab a cup of coffee and let’s dive into how to prepare your home for successful house showings!

Step 1: Declutter and Depersonalize

The first step in preparing your home for successful house showings is to declutter and depersonalize your space. Potential buyers want to envision themselves living in your home, and this can be difficult if they are distracted by personal items and clutter.

Start by removing any excess furniture and items that are taking up unnecessary space. Pack away items that are not needed and donate or sell any items that you no longer want or need. The goal is to create a spacious and inviting environment that allows potential buyers to focus on the features of your home.

Additionally, depersonalizing your space is important. Remove any personal photos, trophies, and mementos.

Finally, be sure to clean and organize all closets, cabinets, and drawers. Potential buyers will want to see ample storage space, so make sure that everything is tidy and organized. 

organized walking closet

Step 2: Deep Clean Your Home

Once you’ve decluttered and depersonalized your space, the next step is to deep clean your home. A clean home looks more appealing to potential buyers.

Start by dusting and wiping down all surfaces, including baseboards, ceiling fans, and light fixtures. Be sure to clean all windows and mirrors, and vacuum or sweep all floors. If you have carpet, consider having it professionally cleaned to remove any stains or odors.

In addition to the standard cleaning tasks, pay special attention to areas that may be easily overlooked. For example, clean the inside of your oven, wipe down your refrigerator and freezer, and clean out your garbage disposal. These small details can make a big difference in how your home is perceived during a showing.

If you’re short on time or would prefer to have a professional handle the cleaning, consider hiring a cleaning service to deep clean your home. A professional cleaning can be well worth the investment and can help ensure that your home looks its best during a showing.

A broom with a dust ball next to it


Step 3: Stage Your Home

Staging your home is another critical step in preparing your home for successful house showings. The goal of staging is to highlight your home’s best features and create a welcoming environment that potential buyers will love.

Start by arranging your furniture in a way that maximizes the space and highlights your home’s best features. If you’re not sure where to start, consider hiring a professional home stager to help you create an inviting and appealing space.

Next, add some decorative touches that will help make your home feel more inviting. For example, add fresh flowers or plants, and incorporate some cozy throw pillows or blankets. Consider adding some artwork or decorative pieces to add visual interest to your space.

Don’t forget about lighting. Make sure that all rooms are well-lit and that any dim areas are addressed with additional lighting. This will help make your home feel bright and welcoming, which is essential for a successful house showing.

Finally, make sure that your home smells great. Consider adding some subtle scents, such as fresh flowers or candles, to make your home feel warm and inviting. Avoid using strong or overpowering scents, as this can be off-putting to some potential buyers.

A staged living room which sofas and a fireplace

Step 4: Make Necessary Repairs and Updates

Start by addressing any minor repairs, such as fixing leaky faucets, patching holes in the walls, and replacing any burned-out light bulbs. These small repairs can make a big difference in how your home is perceived during a showing.

Next, consider making any necessary updates or improvements to your home. This could include updating your kitchen or bathrooms, replacing outdated fixtures or appliances, or repainting rooms that need a fresh coat of paint. These updates can not only improve your home’s functionality and appearance, but they can also make it more attractive to potential buyers.

If you’re not sure where to start, consider hiring a professional home inspector to evaluate your home and identify any necessary repairs or updates. This can help ensure that you’re addressing all necessary issues before listing your home for sale.

man painting a room

Step 6: Highlight Your Home’s Best Features

When preparing your home for successful house showings, it’s important to showcase your home’s best features. This will help potential buyers see the unique qualities of your home.

Start by identifying your home’s standout features. This could include architectural details, such as a fireplace or crown molding, or unique amenities, such as a pool or outdoor living space. Once you’ve identified your home’s best features, highlight them during showings by ensuring they are clean, well-maintained, and prominently displayed.

You can also use strategic staging to draw attention to your home’s best features. For example, if your home has a beautiful view, make sure the window treatments are open during showings to let in natural light and showcase the view. Or, if your home has a spacious master bedroom, arrange furniture in a way that highlights the room’s size and storage potential.

By highlighting your home’s best features, you can make it stand out from other homes on the market and increase its appeal to potential buyers. Just be sure to focus on features that will be most attractive to your target buyer demographic.

over head view of living room with fireplace and sofa

Successful House Showings Final Thoughts

Preparing your home for successful house showings requires careful planning and attention to detail. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can ensure that your home is in its best condition when potential buyers come to view it.

Remember to start by decluttering and depersonalizing your home, and then focus on deep cleaning and staging it to showcase its best features. Creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere can also make a big difference in how potential buyers perceive your home.

Finally, it’s important to take care of any necessary repairs before putting your home on the market. By addressing any issues upfront, you can avoid any surprises during the closing process and increase the chances of a successful sale.

With these tips in mind, you can feel confident in your ability to prepare your home for successful house showings and attract the right buyers to make a great deal.

If you're ready to sell, connect with me! Alisha Anglin-Pagan, 718-930-0809, Alisha.pagan@randrealty.com, 229 NY 32, Central Valley, NY 10917

Howeowner ResourceSelling Your Home March 7, 2023

How to Avoid a Foreclosure: Overview and Process

For many homeowners, the thought of losing their home to foreclosure can be a frightening and stressful experience. If you’re struggling to make your mortgage payments due to financial difficulties, I want you to know that you’re not alone. In this post, we’ll explore what foreclosure is, how it works, and most importantly, what options you have to avoid it. My goal is to provide you with the information and resources you need to keep your home and move forward with confidence. So let’s dive in!

Colonial house with an open house sign in front of it.

What is a Foreclosure?

Foreclosure is the legal process by which lenders take possession of a property when borrowers fail to make mortgage payments. Lenders typically send a notice of default when borrowers fall behind on payments, notifying them that they are in breach of their loan agreement, and that foreclosure proceedings may begin.

Foreclosure proceedings vary by state, but generally involve a court process in which lenders petition the court to take possession of the property. The court may order the sale of the property to repay the outstanding debt owed to the lender. In some states, foreclosure can also result in borrowers being held responsible for any deficiency.

A judges wooden hammer on a table.

How Does Foreclosure Work?

Here is a general overview of the foreclosure process:

Notice of Default:

When a borrower falls behind on their mortgage payments, the lender will typically send a notice of default. This is a formal notification that the borrower is in breach of their loan agreement and that the lender intends to begin foreclosure proceedings.


After a notice of default has been issued, the borrower enters a pre-foreclosure period. During this time, the borrower may be able to work out a solution with the lender to avoid foreclosure. Options include loan modifications, repayment plans, or forbearance agreements.

Foreclosure Sale:

If the borrower is unable to work out a solution with the lender, the property will be put up for sale at a public auction. The highest bidder will typically be required to pay in cash, and the sale proceeds will go to the lender to repay the outstanding debt.


If the property is not sold at auction, it will be returned to the lender. The lender may then attempt to sell the property through a real estate agent or other means. If the sale of the property does not cover the outstanding debt owed to the lender, the borrower may be held responsible for the difference. The term REO or Real Estate Owned reflects a bank-owned post-foreclosure property.

Family hugging with three kids in a field or park.

Options to Avoid Foreclosure

Foreclosure can be a devastating experience for homeowners, but there are options available to help them avoid losing their homes. Here are some of the most common options:

Loan Modification:

A loan modification is a permanent change to the terms of the borrower’s mortgage loan. This can include a reduction in interest rates, a change in the loan term, or a reduction in the principal amount owed.

Repayment Plan:

A repayment plan is an agreement between the borrower and the lender to pay back the missed payments over a set period of time.

Forbearance Agreement:

A forbearance agreement is a temporary pause in mortgage payments. The borrower and lender agree to a set period of time during which the borrower does not have to make payments.


Refinancing involves replacing an existing mortgage loan with a new one. This can be an option if the borrower has improved their credit score or if interest rates have decreased.

A family on a sofa in front of the kitchen

Last Alternative to Avoiding Foreclosure

Finally, if all other alternatives are exhausted and the borrower still wants to avoid foreclosure, they would need to sell the property: If unable to make up their mortgage payments, they may be able to sell the property before foreclosure proceedings begin.

There’s always options

Foreclosure is a serious legal matter, and it’s important to explore all options available to avoid it. If you’re facing foreclosure, seek the advice of a qualified attorney. They can help you understand your legal rights and options. Remember, there are resources available to help you so don’t wait until its too late.

If you're looking to buy, connect with me! Alisha Anglin-Pagan, 718-930-0809, Alisha.pagan@randrealty.com, 229 NY 32, Central Valley, NY 10917

First Time Home BuyerHome Buying February 28, 2023

FHA Mortgage: Pros and Cons

When it comes to home buying, there are many different types of mortgages available. One option that may be suitable for some individuals is an FHA mortgage. FHA mortgages are backed by the Federal Housing Administration. They are designed to help people who might not be able to qualify for a traditional mortgage obtain financing for a home. While there are certainly benefits to an FHA mortgage, there are also some drawbacks to consider.

A family, husband and wife with two children on a couch looking at a mobile device with the kitchen behind them.

Pros of an FHA Mortgage

Lower Down Payment Requirements

One of the most significant advantages of an FHA mortgage is the lower down payment requirements. Typically, a borrower can put down as little as 3.5% of the home’s purchase price. This is much lower than the 20% down payment required for many traditional mortgages. For someone who is struggling to save for a down payment, an FHA mortgage can be a more accessible option.

More Lenient Credit Score Requirements

Another benefit of an FHA mortgage is that the credit score requirements are generally more lenient than those for a traditional mortgage. Borrowers with a credit score as low as 580 may be able to qualify for an FHA mortgage, while a traditional mortgage may require a score of at least 620. This can be a significant advantage for someone who has struggled with credit issues in the past.

Woman sitting in living room on a sofa, view of her from above.

Flexible Debt-to-Income Ratio

In addition to more lenient credit score requirements, FHA mortgages also have more flexible debt-to-income ratio requirements. While traditional mortgages may require a borrower’s debt-to-income ratio to be no higher than 43%, FHA mortgages may allow a ratio as high as 50%. This can be helpful for someone who has a lot of debt or a lower income.

Easier to Qualify for with a Lower Income

An FHA mortgage can also be easier to qualify for if you have a lower income. Because the debt-to-income ratio requirements are more flexible and the credit score requirements are more lenient, someone with a lower income may still be able to qualify for an FHA mortgage. This can be a significant advantage for someone who may not be able to afford a home with a traditional mortgage.

Family hugging with three kids in a field or park.

Assumable Mortgage

Another unique benefit of an FHA mortgage is that it is assumable. This means that if you sell your home, the buyer can assume your mortgage and take over the remaining balance. This can be an attractive feature for someone who is looking to sell their home in the future.

Cons of an FHA Mortgage

Mortgage Insurance Premiums

One of the biggest drawbacks of an FHA mortgage is the mortgage insurance premiums (MIP). Unlike a traditional mortgage, an FHA mortgage requires MIP, which is essentially insurance for the lender in case the borrower defaults on the loan. MIP is paid both upfront at the time of closing and as a monthly payment. This can add a significant amount to the monthly mortgage payment and can make the loan more expensive over time.

Man sitting on sofa while drinking from mug and cat on top of his leg.

Limited Loan Amounts

Another downside of an FHA mortgage is that there are limits on how much you can borrow. These limits vary by location and are determined by the median home price in that area. For someone who is looking to buy a more expensive home, an FHA mortgage may not be a viable option.

Property Requirements

To qualify for an FHA mortgage, the property you are purchasing must meet certain requirements. These requirements can include things like the condition of the property, its age, and its location. Cooperatives, which are typical in New York City, can not be purchased with an FHA mortgage due to the fact that it is not real property. Condos may also pose an issue as the condo complex must be approved for FHA mortgages. This process can be long and daunting and many condos don’t bother with partaking in it. This can limit the homes that are available to someone who is looking to purchase with an FHA mortgage.

Yellow Labrador retriever laying on a wooden deck.

Longer Closing Time

Another disadvantage of an FHA mortgage is that the closing time can be longer than with a traditional mortgage. This is because there are more requirements and paperwork involved in the process. For someone who is looking to close on their home quickly, this can be a significant drawback.

Limited Availability

Finally, FHA mortgages may not be available from all lenders. Some lenders may choose not to offer FHA mortgages due to the additional requirements and paperwork involved. This can limit the number of options available to someone who is looking for an FHA mortgage.

Overall, an FHA mortgage can be a good option for someone who is struggling to qualify for a traditional mortgage. The lower down payment requirements, more lenient credit score requirements, and flexible debt-to-income ratio can make an FHA mortgage a viable option for someone who has a lower income or has struggled with credit issues in the past. However, it’s important to consider the drawbacks as well, such as the mortgage insurance premiums, limited loan amounts, and property requirements. Before deciding on an FHA mortgage, it’s important to do your research and weigh the pros and cons carefully to determine if it’s the right choice for you.

If you're ready to buy, connect with me! Alisha Anglin-Pagan, 718-930-0809, Alisha.pagan@randrealty.com, 229 NY 32, Central Valley, NY 10917

Howeowner ResourceSelling Your Home February 27, 2023

10 Tips For Selling Your Home in 2023

Selling your home can be an overwhelming and stressful experience, but with the right strategy and preparation, you can maximize your chances of selling your home quickly and at a good price. Whether you are a first-time seller or a seasoned pro, there are certain steps you can take to make your home stand out from the crowd and attract potential buyers. In this blog post, we’ll provide you with 10 tips for selling your home in 2023.


1 – Get your home ready for sale

The first step in selling your home is to prepare it for sale. This means decluttering and cleaning every room, making any necessary repairs, and sprucing up your home’s curb appeal. Start by removing any unnecessary items from your home, such as excess furniture, decorations, and personal items. Clean every room in your house thoroughly, paying special attention to the kitchen and bathrooms. Make any necessary repairs, such as fixing leaky faucets, replacing light bulbs, and patching holes in the walls. Finally, give your home’s exterior a makeover by trimming the lawn, planting flowers, and repainting the front door if needed.

A man with a neon yellow shirt painting a wall in a room.

2 – Price your home correctly

Pricing your home correctly is crucial if you want to sell it quickly and at a good price. Overpricing your home can deter potential buyers, while underpricing it can leave money on the table. To determine the right price for your home, research the local real estate market and compare the prices of similar homes in your area. You can also consult with a real estate agent or appraiser to get an accurate valuation of your home.

Two male's hands pointing on a contract's details that's on a table

3 – Hire a reputable real estate agent

A good real estate agent can be invaluable when selling your home. A reputable agent can help you price your home correctly, market it effectively, and negotiate with potential buyers. Look for an agent with a proven track record of success in your local market, and don’t be afraid to ask for references and check their online reviews.

4 – Stage your home for sale

Staging your home for sale involves making your home look its best for potential buyers. This can involve rearranging furniture, adding or removing decor, and highlighting your home’s best features. The goal of staging is to help potential buyers envision themselves living in your home. You can hire a professional stager or do it yourself using online resources and tips.

Inside of a home, kitchen counter facing towards a living and dining room.

5 – Take high-quality photos and videos

In today’s digital age, most homebuyers begin their search online. This means that high-quality photos and videos are essential for attracting potential buyers. Hire a professional photographer or take your own photos using a high-quality camera. Be sure to take photos of every room in your home, as well as the exterior and any unique features or amenities.

6 – Market your home effectively

Marketing your home effectively is key to attracting potential buyers. This can involve listing your home on multiple real estate websites, creating a virtual tour or video walkthrough, and promoting your home on social media. Your real estate agent should be able to help you create a comprehensive marketing plan that reaches potential buyers across a variety of channels.

7 – Be flexible with showings

When selling your home, you’ll need to be flexible with showings. This means being prepared to show your home at a moment’s notice and accommodating potential buyers’ schedules. Keep your home clean and tidy at all times so that you can quickly prepare for showings, and be willing to leave your home during showings so that potential buyers can explore it freely.

An open house sign on grass for selling your home

8 – Respond quickly to offers

When you receive an offer on your home, it’s important to respond quickly. This shows potential buyers that you are serious about selling your home and can help you avoid losing out on a sale. Work with your real estate agent to review and respond to offers promptly, and be open to negotiating with buyers to find a mutually agreeable price.

9 – Make necessary repairs before closing

Before closing on the sale of your home, you may need to make repairs that were identified during the home inspection. Be prepared to negotiate with the buyer about which repairs you will make and how they will be paid for. It’s important to make any necessary repairs before closing to avoid delays or issues with the sale.

A man with a neon orange vest repairing a wall a/c unit

10 – Work with a reliable real estate attorney

Finally, before even listing your home, find a reliable real estate attorney. Not all states require one, but in order to sell real estate in New York State you do. Having a reliable one who is experienced in real estate transactions in your area can help ensure that everything runs smoothly. They ensure that all necessary documents are signed and filed correctly, that the transfer of ownership goes smoothly, educate you on your process and ensure that you are aware of any and all potential issues that may arise. It’s best to stick to one who is local as they understand the local municipal rules and regulations. Also, be sure to research potential real estate attorneys and choose one with a good reputation and track record of success. Typically, your real estate agent can suggest great ones to work with.

In conclusion, selling your home can be a challenging process, but with the right preparation, strategy and team, you can maximize your chances of success. By getting your home ready for sale, pricing it correctly, hiring a reputable real estate agent, staging it for sale, taking high-quality photos and videos, marketing it effectively, being flexible with showings, responding quickly to offers, making necessary repairs before closing, and working with a reliable real estate attorney, you can sell your home quickly and at a good price.

Good luck!

If you're ready to sell, connect with me! Alisha Anglin-Pagan, 718-930-0809, Alisha.pagan@randrealty.com, 229 NY 32, Central Valley, NY 10917

Howeowner ResourceInvesting February 5, 2023

Turning your investment property into an Airbnb: Is it for you?

Turning your investment property into an Airbnb: Is it for you? As you try to figure out the best path for your investment property, you may be bombarded with different options. With the right strategy, it can reap great financial benefits. But, with so many options available, it can be challenging to determine which path is the best for you.

One option that has gained popularity in recent years is turning an investment property into an Airbnb rental. This model offers many benefits, but it also comes with its own set of risks and challenges. Here, we will explore the pros and cons of turning an investment property into an Airbnb rental and hopefully help you determine if it’s the right choice for you.

Villa with a pool. Kitchen is open to the living room and pool area.

The pros of turning your investment property into an Airbnb:

High potential for rental income

Airbnb rentals can often generate higher rental income than traditional long-term rentals. This is because Airbnb rentals are typically rented out on a short-term basis. Short-term basis allows the owner to charge a premium for the convenience and flexibility of the space.

Increased flexibility

Unlike long-term rentals, which typically require a lease agreement that binds the tenant to the property for a set period of time, Airbnb rentals offer much greater flexibility. Property owners can choose when to make their property available for rent. They can easily change the rental amount depending on the season, local events, and other factors that impact demand.

Small log cabin surrounded by pine trees and a hammock in front of it.

Potential for increased property value

With the rise of Airbnb, many areas have seen a surge in property values as buyers look to cash in on the potential rental income from Airbnb rentals. This can be particularly true in tourist-heavy areas where Airbnb rentals are in high demand.

Ability to leverage local knowledge

As the owner of an Airbnb rental, you have a unique opportunity to leverage your local knowledge to provide a more enjoyable experience for your guests. This can include offering recommendations for local attractions, restaurants, and events, or providing insider tips on the best places to visit in the area.

Overhead view of Bear Mountain, Bear Mountain Bridge, and the Hudson River

The cons of turning your investment property into an Airbnb:

Increased competition

As Airbnb becomes more popular, the competition for rental properties is increasing. This means that property owners need to be proactive in promoting their listings and ensuring they stand out from the crowd.

More complex regulations

Turning an investment property into an Airbnb rental can involve navigating a more complex regulatory environment. This includes dealing with local zoning and licensing regulations, as well as taxes and insurance requirements.

Mouse, mug and laptop on top of tax paperwork.

Increased responsibility

As the owner of an Airbnb rental, you are responsible for ensuring that your property is well-maintained and in good condition. This includes regular cleaning and dealing with maintenance issues. You would also have to ensure that the property is equipped with the necessary amenities and furnishings to provide a comfortable stay for your guests.

Potential for decreased property value

In some areas, Airbnb rentals have been associated with a decline in property values. This is particularly true in areas where the influx of short-term renters has disrupted the local community and led to increased noise, traffic, and other issues.

Some locations and property types don’t work

Long term rentals can be placed anywhere, but Airbnb’s cannot. Locations for Airbnb’s are highly important if you want to reap great returns. It should be in close proximity to attractions or destinations that have a good influx of visitors. The location should also be easy to get to from the Airbnb. Property types and amenities can affect reservations as well. Some rentals won’t get as many reservations as others due to their layout or lack of amenities, unlike with long term rentals, which wouldn’t matter as much.

Broken down and falling apart shack.

Is turning your investment property into an Airbnb for you?

Turning an investment property into an Airbnb rental can be a lucrative and rewarding strategy, but it also comes with its own set of challenges. Before making the decision to turn your investment property into an Airbnb rental, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons. Consider factors before going this route, such as local market conditions, competition, and regulations. It’s also important to be well-prepared and informed. This includes researching local taxes, investing in quality furnishings and familiarizing yourself with the area and local attractions.

Ultimately, the decision to turn your investment property into an Airbnb rental will depend on your personal goals and circumstances. If you’re looking for a flexible and potentially high-income investment opportunity, Airbnb rentals can be a great choice. But if you’re looking for a more stable, long-term investment, traditional long-term rentals may be a better option.

If you're ready to start investing, connect with me! Alisha Anglin-Pagan, 718-930-0809, Alisha.pagan@randrealty.com, 229 NY 32, Central Valley, NY 10917

Investing January 27, 2023

Real Estate: The Key to Financial Security

Investing in real estate can be an important component of a well-rounded investment portfolio and a key factor in achieving financial security. It offers a number of benefits that can help diversify an investment portfolio and provides protection against inflation.

Main Benefits

One of the main benefits of real estate investment is the potential for strong returns. Real estate can provide a steady stream of income through rental income and can also appreciate in value over time, providing a significant capital gain when the property is eventually sold. Additionally, it can provide a consistent and predictable cash flow, which can be especially useful during retirement years.

Another benefit of real estate investment is that it is a tangible asset, unlike stocks or bonds, which are intangible assets. This tangibility provides a sense of security, as the investor can physically see and touch the property and can also control the property and make any necessary improvements to it.

An apartment building with balconies


Real estate also tends to be a relatively stable investment, as it is not as volatile as stocks and bonds. While the value of a stock or bond can fluctuate dramatically in a short period of time, real estate values tend to change more slowly and steadily. This makes it a more predictable investment, which can be particularly beneficial for those who are looking to build long-term wealth.

Tax Benefits

Real estate also offers tax benefits, including deductions for mortgage interest, depreciation, and maintenance expenses, which can help to reduce an investor’s tax liability.

Hand in front of a house in a suburb area holding a cellphone with a digital image of a home pointing to the money symbol.

Inflation Buffer

Furthermore, real estate can also act as a hedge against inflation. As the cost of goods and services increases over time, the value of a property also tends to increase, which can help to protect an investor’s purchasing power.

In conclusion, investing in real estate can be a powerful tool for achieving financial security. It offers the potential for strong returns, tangible assets, stability, tax benefits, and protection against inflation. It is an investment that can provide both short-term and long-term benefits, making it a worthwhile consideration for anyone looking to build a diversified portfolio. These benefits make real estate the key to financial security.

Home BuyingRelocation April 13, 2022

Final Walkthrough on Closing Day

It took me a while to post this video on YouTube of my final walkthrough on closing day because…I’m lazy, with video editing at least.

Sue me!

This past Monday was closing day for my clients! Yay! They were moving from Forest Hills in Queens to Cortlandt Manor in Westchester County. I got there a little bit earlier than they did because they were caught in some traffic coming up north.  In this video you will see the outside of their beautiful bilevel home on a gorgeous lot that backs into a creek. Talk about an upgrade!


We had to perform a final walkthrough on closing day prior to closing because of their work schedule. A Final walkthrough can be done on the same day or a few days before a scheduled closing, whichever works best for the clients, just as long as it’s done before closing. Do not skip it and remember that the closer to the closing day, the better. The purpose of a final walkthrough is to insure that the home is in the same state it was in during the inspection. Of course, this would be minus any furniture and trash that belonged to the old owners. Homes should be broom swept but if a seller wanted to, they could do a deep cleaning as well.

Other things that you check during a final walkthrough:

  • Operational appliances
  • Working hot water heater
  • Working heat and/or air conditioner
  • Electrical outlets are operational
  • No noticeable damage like holes in the walls, broken windows, or any other damages that were not there before
  • No leaks
  • Windows and doors are operational
  • Electricity is operational
  • Home is vacant

Of course, if you are purchasing a home that is in need of repair or a gut renovation, it may be in disarray. In those cases, you wouldn’t expect for it to have working water or electricity if it didn’t have it already. In example, if you are buying a bank owned or REO property, the power may be shut off. Or, it may not even have an operational kitchen. In these cases, you wouldn’t expect it to have those items when you do your final walkthrough unless the seller agreed to rectify those issues. Always expect that the state of the home should be in the same state as when you did your home inspection.

Outside a bilevel home

I will say it again, do not skip it!

It is so important to get this done before closing and to check everything! You never know what you might find after you close if you don’t check the home prior to closing. Once you close on a property and issues arise that could have been addressed during the final walk-through, it is all on you! When issues arise during the walkthrough, you would bring it to the attention of your attorney. At that point, your attorney would negotiate with the seller on ways to rectify the issue.

Let’s say you walked into the home during the final walk-through and found that the place was trashed. You would let your attorney know and at the closing table, the attorney would negotiate with the seller. They may state that the seller has to put $5,000 in escrow and within 10 days, clear out the home. If the seller doesn’t clear out the home, the buyer gets the $5000. If the seller does clear out the home before the deadline, the seller gets the money back. This is just a possible scenario of what would happen if an issue arises during the final walk-through.

But if you didn’t do a final walkthrough and an issue was found after closing, you are now responsible for it, not the seller. You can’t go after seller after the fact.

So do your final walk-through!

For my clients, everything in the home was operational and the condition of the home was what we had expected it to be. It day went smoothly and now they are fellow neighbors in the Hudson Valley! I had a bit of a laugh as they had sent me a text later that day, saying that they got stuck by the creek. Instead of asking help, they asked for Sangrias! Love my clients sense of humor!

Anyway, I hope that you enjoy the video and found this information useful. If you are need of assistance with buying or selling real estate, contact me! I’m here to help!


Family FunLocal EventsRelocation December 8, 2021

December Happenings of 2021

Here are some December Happenings version 2021! Yes, I am a bit late with this post and I do apologize about that! Since working with so many transplants from the city, many of whom are eager to get to know the area, I am bombarded with a plethora of questions on what to do up this way. They are seeking fun local activities, events, and such. So, I have decided to create monthly newsletter-type entries showcasing a few local fun things to do for the month.

December is underway, Christmas is almost here and Hanukkah just wrapped up for the year. I love the holidays, don’t you? The lights, the energy, the shopping, and the fun things to do! But being from the city, it’s not as simple as just a train ride or bumping into something interesting randomly while walking down the street. Up here, you’ll have to do some research or be a part of a great Facebook group in order to get an idea of what’s happening for the month. So to keep it a bit more simple for you, here are some great things to do this month with your family in tow or just solo.

December Happenings

Christmas in a small town

1 – Museum Village’s – Christmas in the Village – Monroe

From December 11th at 11 am to December 12th at 4 pm, experience Museum Village’s winter wonderland! Listen to carolers, shop local vendors, and meet Santa and Mrs. Claus.

2 – Sugar Loaf Holiday Celebration – Sugar Loaf

December 11th at 11 am, the Sugar Loaf Holiday Festival is extra-spirited this year. Guests will enjoy a festive day full of holiday cheer including:

  •  Hot cider courtesy of the Sugar Loaf Community Foundation;
  • Treeside caroling with the Warwick Valley Chorale, Warwick Valley High School Treble Choir, and the Warwick Valley High School Meistersingers;
  • Visits with Santa to share wishlists and capture keepsake photos;
  • Horse Drawn carriage rides through the village of Sugar Loaf (weather dependent) from 1-4:30pm;
  • Tree lighting at 4:30pm;
  • Shopping the dozens of artisan shops and boutiques
  • Dining and snacking at local village eateries.
  • Shopping Discount Ticket for all guests! Stop in White Rabbit Restorations at 62 Wood Road to pick up a ticket valid for shopping discounts and freebies from shops and eateries throughout the Village of Sugar Loaf.

Additional details and updates available at https://www.sugarloafnewyork.com/events

3 – Breakfast With Santa! – Chester

December 19th at 7:30 am, Santa’s Firehouse Elves are hard at work cooking breakfast for you!

  • $10 per elf
  • $5 per seasoned elf (65+)
  • Free for tiny elves 4 and under

Santa clause's hand, reaching for a cookie

4 – Santa Paws – Pet photos with Santa – Tractor Supply Co. in Pine Bush

December 11th at 11 am, all pets and children are welcome to have their photos taken with Santa for just $10! They will also have a raffle table of goodies and Christmas gift ideas.

-Each photo will be printed out on site. The photos will also be posted on this page the week after the event.

5 – Breakfast with the Grinch – Home2 Suites by Hilton Middletown

Sunday, December 19th at 10 am – 12 pm, Visit Home2ville at the Home2 Suites Middletown on Sunday, December 19th from 10 am-12 pm! Enjoy breakfast with the Grinch, crafts, and face painting by Legends Barbershop!! Bring your cameras for lasting memories. Reservations are required. Please email: Heather.Parkinson@hilton.com to reserve.

  • $20.00 for Adults & Children (in advance)
  • $25.00 at the door
  • Children under 1 are free

6 – Holiday Craft & Vendor Fair – Sloatsburg

December 11th from 10 am to 4 pm, shop this year at our special Holiday Library Holiday Craft & Vendor Fair, which sets up this season at the Sloatsburg Senior Center.

7 – Brunch with Santa – The Thayer Hotel at West Point

December 5th, 12th, and 19th starting at 10:30 am, join in for their award winning Sunday Champagne Brunch with special guest, Santa! View the Menu: https://www.thethayerhotel.com/santabrunch.html

Reservations required.
10:30 AM, 11:00 AM & 1:30 PM
Call to make your reservation: 845-446-4731 ext. 7929

8 – Wynonna Judd – Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center

Wednesday, December 15th, at 6 pm, Orange Motorsports & Entertainment is pleased to present WYNONNA JUDD with a special holiday show at the Sugar Loaf Performing Arts Center, in Chester, NY. Tickets · $60 – $75.

gold wrapped Christmas gift

9 – Holiday Artisan Fair – Mamakating Environmental Education Center

December 11th at 10 am to 3 pm, Enjoy a festive atmosphere as you peruse the wares of local artisans. Find unique gifts, enjoy holiday refreshments, and support local business at the same time.

10 – Santa at the Tap House – Pine Island Tap House

December 18th from 2 pm – 5 pm, guess who is coming to the Tap House??? You got it, Santa! Oh, what fun this is going to be!!!!

Santa will be here from 2 pm till 5 pm on Saturday, December 18th. Please stop by with your children or adults and say hi to Santa and take a picture and tell him what you want for Christmas!
This is a free event.

11 – Winterfest – Sloatsburg Train Station

December 12th, 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM, Save The Date – Chamber’s Annual Winterfest! Join in and enjoy decorations and holiday music, food & craft vendors, children’s crafts, warming stations, our Chili Contest (judging at 2pm), Ugly Sweater Contest (judging at 3pm). Contact Jessie at jssitylr@gmail.com to register for the Chili contest. Contestants should bring chili croc pots by noon to the pavilion. Winner announced at 2:00pm. $5 to taste and vote for best chili. Good luck!
festive Christmas cookies

12 – Holiday Market – The Yard – Beacon

December 11th at 10 am, this market will feature 30+ Hudson Valley Artisans. There will be food vendors, live music, an airstream turned bar serving beverages (alcoholic + non-alcoholic), incredible artisans with SO MANY HOLIDAY GIFT IDEAS and so much more…

13 – Ugly Sweater Party – Hillcrest Entertainment Inc – Florida

December 11th at 8pm, Join in at Hillcrest Entertainment for an ugly sweater party! Come enjoy a night out where the food is always great and the drinks are always cold, all while wearing your ugliest sweater! Saturday. Please bring a New unwrapped toy to contribute to the Toys for Tots program to Make Christmas special for a Child who may otherwise not have one.

14 – Home At Last – the Brewery at Orange County Hops – Walden

December 1oth at 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm, beer and music always makes for a good time! Performance by Tom Rausch Gigs.

15 – Holiday Boutique – Stony Point

December 12th from 9am to 3pm, the Holiday season is upon us. So get your shopping started by supporting local businesses at Powerhouse Dance Center’s Holiday Boutique.

cup of hot cocoa with whip cream on top

16 – A Christmas Carol – Dinner Theatre Show – New Windsor

December 18th at 4:30pm, You’ve seen Scrooge, Tiny Tim and the Ghosts of Christmas from a theatre seat. This season, why not dine with them?

17 – Westchester’s Winter Wonderland Drive-thru Holiday Light Extravaganza – Kensico Dam Plaza

Holiday season from 6pm to 9pm, Westchester’s Winter Wonderland Drive-Thru Holiday Light Extravaganza, presented by Westchester Medical Center Health Network, returns to Kensico Dam Plaza bigger and better than ever with thousands of more lights, magical holiday animations and a live Santa!

boy playing in snow

18 – Kids New Years Bash – Newburgh Mall

December 29th, at 1 pm to 3 pm. First… Live Magic Show with The Great Charlini. Afterwards celebrate the New Years with the countdown and the ball drop. Then… race painting and fun with Ms. Bubbles and Pals. Snacks and bottle of water will be provided (please note that snacks may not be allergy-friendly).

19 – Holiday Lights on Jenkins Court – Ossining

Reoccurring until January 6th 4:30-9:00 pm. Lights on Jenkins Court is the Staples family’s home light show. The show has run each year since 2017 during the holiday season. Jeff started designing and programming holiday light shows as a hobby over 6 years ago. Today, hundreds of Ossining residents stop by the house to see the 23 minute light show.You can watch the show at 12 Jenkins Court, Ossining. Tune to FM 90.5 to hear the medleys that accompany the display of lights.

Enjoy the holidays and check out some of these December Happenings! As I stated at the beginning of this post, this is only some of what’s going on in the area but it’s plenty to keep you busy! And if you’re looking to migrate up this way, looking to buy or sell in the Hudson Valley area, contact me! I’d love to help!




Howeowner ResourceRelocationSelling Your Home October 13, 2021

Fall Market Update: Is the Fall a Good Time to Sell?

Fall Market Update

Before I dive in, I just want to share a bit about what is going on in our market in Orange County, New York. New listings for single family homes is down so far, compared to this time last year from 569 to 404, a -29% decrease. As for those that sold, that is also down from 434 to 349, a -19.6% decrease. Days on market have also decreased from this time last year, from 74 to 47 days. What does all this mean? Not a lot of listings, less sales, higher demand, lower days on market. Current inventory is around 500 less than this time last year and median sales price is up 18.1%. This is only in regards to single family homes but condos are following suit as well.

Snapshot of market update

Is this all sustainable?

Well, as long as the inventory remains low and buyer demand remains up as well as the interest rate remaining steady, this will continue. I have seen in my personal experience that multiple bidding, waiving contingencies that protect the buyers, and over bidding have all been slowly declining. Buyers with FHA and VA loans are starting to be able to win their bids which was pretty much impossible a few months ago.

Properties are also being relisted recently and it’s due to two issues: 1) Buyers not being able to get approval for their loan, either they did something silly and made a purchase that they should have waited for or, they simply can’t afford the home. 2) The home didn’t get appraised for the price that was agreed upon and the buyer does not have the extra funds to match their offer price.

The front of a house during sunset with lights on and a wet road infront of it

How to fix this?

First, ensure that you’re vetting the buyers. They can use whatever lender they want, but if you have a preferred lender that you trust, have them vet the buyers for you. If you have an agent, they should also vet all potential buyers, even if they are represented by a buyer’s agent.  Secondly, don’t over price your home! It will take longer to sell and you will end up having to settle for a lower price anyway. You can always contest an appraisal or get the buyer to switch a lender and get a another appraisal but that doesn’t guarantee you’ll get your price. Also, FHA appraisals are set in stone, so if you get another FHA buyer, they will go off of the other FHA buyer’s appraisal price.

Now, is the fall a good time to sell?

The early spring through the summer are generally the busiest times of the year for home sales, but the fall can be a particularly advantageous time of year for sellers. Housing inventory drops off during the fall months, as I had mentioned at the beginning, inventory is lower than it was this time last year, so sellers definitely have less competition. That means you can expect higher offers, and still aim for fewer contingencies, and less scrutiny from buyers. You maintain more power over your terms, as it is still a strong seller’s market.

Fall buyers are serious buyers!

Early in the year you can get lots of lookers who are just thinking about buying at some point, but by fall the buyers still looking are ready to get under contract and often have a deadline. Many fall buyers are anxious to get settled before the holiday season and, if they have children in school, they will want to get them in their new schools before too much of the school year passes.

Employers who pay to relocate employees also like to shop off-season to save on moving costs. If you live near a large hospital, university, technology center, or industrial area, your home may be attractive to relocation services.

Fall is also prime time for buyers who aren’t shopping school districts. Young professionals and empty-nesters are two populations more likely to shop in the fall. If you are marketing to these populations, you might want to show off multi-use spaces for exercise rooms, a home office, or game room.

house in the fall

The fall is much more fun for showing a home than the dead of summer. Use the mild weather and a festive atmosphere to enhance your home’s showing potential. As the temperatures cool and we welcome crisp, clear fall days, it becomes easier to maintain your yard and add to your curb appeal. You can use fall colors and foliage in your home décor to create a cozy atmosphere. Don’t forget some pumpkin spice scented candles or warm oatmeal cookies to warm buyers up for a sweet deal.

If you’re thinking about selling but can’t decide between listing now and waiting until after the holidays, now is the time. Give me a call or reach out to me here, and let’s tie the whole process up in a pretty red bow long before the new year.⁣

Home BuyingRelocationSelling Your Home September 14, 2021

12 Tips for an Easier Move

As exciting as it is to move into a new home, not many people look forward to the actual moving day. Whether you are moving across town or across the country, moving is stressful. Here are some helpful hints from expert movers to make the big day a little more bearable.

1. Schedule your move well ahead of time.

Moving companies get booked up weeks in advance, so don’t wait until the last minute to schedule your move. Make sure they know ahead of time if you have any very large or heavy items to move. The last thing you want is for the movers to show up with a truck that isn’t big enough or without enough people to move your belongings safely.

zoomed in calendar

2. Consider letting the moving company pack your items.

If it’s within your budget to hire packers, it may be money well spent. Packers are usually very efficient and take time to wrap fragile items securely. Packers will usually pack the day before your move, so you don’t have to pack items away that you may need up until the day of your move.

3. Schedule services.

Don’t forget to have services transferred or started at your new home. These may include:

  • Power
  • Water
  • Trash service
  • Internet/TV/Phone
  • Gas
  • Lawn service
  • Pool service
  • Security system monitoring

4. Have your new home professionally cleaned.

If your seller is not arranging for cleaning to be done prior to closing, arrange to have it done before you move in so that you won’t arrive to a dirty house.


5. Pack a moving supply box.

Your moving supply box should contain items you may need while you are unpacking and getting settled in your new home, such as:

  • Toilet paper
  • Paper towels
  • Sponge
  • All-purpose cleaner and glass cleaner
  • Shelf liner paper
  • Scissors
  • Furniture moving pads
  • Tape measure
  • Cordless screwdriver
  • Hammer
  • Picture hanging kit
  • Bottled water, snacks, pet food
  • Paper plates, cups, and disposable utensils
  • Dish Soap and Hand Soap

6. Make Your Bed.

As soon as your bed frames and mattresses come off the truck, put them together or have the movers put them together, and make them up. Pack your sheets, blankets, and pillows together in well-marked boxes so you can find them easily. When you are ready to collapse at the end of moving day, you’ll be thankful the beds are made up and ready to fall into.

7. Ditto for your towels and bath soap.

Pack bath towels and soap with your bed sheets so you can jump in the shower before retiring without having to search for towels.

8. Make Plans for Your pets.

The last thing you need on moving day is a stressed-out pup or kitty, or worse, one that escapes in an unfamiliar neighborhood. Make plans for your pets to spend the day with family or friends, a pet sitter, or boarding facility until you are ready to introduce them to their new home.


9. Say Yes to Helpers.

Sometimes it’s hard to accept extra help from family or friends if you aren’t sure what they can help with. Here are some tasks you can delegate:

  • Lay shelf liner in the kitchen and bathroom cabinets and drawers
  • Unpack and put away your kitchen items (you can rearrange later!)
  • Babysit or keep your children occupied
  • Make up your beds, place towels in the bathrooms
  • Wipe down cabinets and counters
  • Break down packing boxes
  • Hang clothes in closets
  • Organize tools and equipment in the garage
  • Pick up lunch or dinner

10. Hire a Sitter.

If you have little ones, they will be very excited about their new home, new rooms, and yard. They will want to be with you, but they will not be interested in unpacking boxes! Make plans for someone to be available just for them, so you can concentrate. A family member, friend or hired sitter can help them explore their new surroundings, build a box fort, or organize their toys in their new rooms without you worrying about where they are.

11. Hire someone to hang your art.

Unless you love to hang things yourself, you might consider having a handyman scheduled to come in and hand your wall art and window treatments for you. This can save you a great deal of time getting settled. If you need help deciding where to hang art or portraits, a decorator may be a better choice than a handyman. They can help you decide on placement and hang items themselves or direct a handyman where to hang items.

12. Check out of the old house.

Prior to closing, you should have submitted a change of address form with the post office. You’ll also need to remember to leave all keys and garage door or gate openers, and make sure the movers don’t pack up things like ceiling fan remote controls or other loose items that stay with the house. Don’t forget to clean out spaces like the attic, backyard sheds, crawl spaces, or any other hideaway spaces you might have stored items. It’s always nice to have the home professionally cleaned for the new owners, and, if you feel inclined, leave a list of recommended local vendors for household services.


If you are moving to my area and would like some great moving company referrals for your upcoming move, please contact me! If you aren’t at this stage yet but would like to be, please do the same! Hoping to hear from you soon!