January 2017 Newsletter – Gay Rosen – Rye/Larchmont/Scarsdale

I am always privileged to have customers and clients who like to view homes in different areas. Based on that, I also like to keep abreast of what is happening in each area with regards to sales.  Here are the 2016 market stats for Larchmont, Rye and Scarsdale, broken down into elementary schools !

Please contact me if you have any questions!

LarchmontRyeScarsdale Market Newsletter- 2017

Westchester is GREAT!

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Larchmont and New Rochelle Real Estate Newsletter -Gay Rosen

It is always nice to know what is happening the real estate world! Whenever I go out for a walk, friends and neighbors alike will ask me what is current and we have always been taught to say ‘wonderful!”. Ha! However, I am too truthful to say that, and like to post what is happening in our areas.

My January newsletter covers Larchmont and New Rochelle  market stats for 2016..

2017 a Year for Change
In reflection, 2017 is looking good for those buyers wishing to buy and for home owners wishing to sell too!
2017 was a tumultuous year in so many ways, and therefore I can only best describe this new year as one of change. The interest rates have gone up slightly, and the Federal Reserve has mentioned they will increase perhaps two or three times more this year perhaps in June (or even sooner). However, having stated that, the rates are still very low! ( Mortgage rates have jumped to 4.1% on a 30-year fixed mortgage from 3.5% a year ago.)
Anyone who purchased a home in the late 1970’s will recall interests rates of 8 and as high as 13% ! You can still write off those mortgage taxes! Per NYSAR (New York State Association of Realtors), it is still cheaper to purchase than to rent , and on 1/9/2017 it was released by the FHA that insurance premiums are going to be reduced from 0.85% to 0.60%. So, all positive.
I hope you enjoy my newsletter below -so many stats but I wanted to inform you all as much as possible with local and pertinent real estate formation.

Gays 2017 January Market Newsletter (1)

Westchester is GREAT!

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Selling your Home! Gay Rosen Sotheby’s International Realty

         Selling your home!

Gay Rosen – Licensed Real Estate Associate broker – ABR, CBR, CDPE, CRS, GREEN, GRI, SRES

 

Selling a home can range from being an exciting adventure to a traumatic experience, and the best way to make it closer to the first is to prepare!

First thing to do? Interview several  agents (unless you  know beforehand the agent you would like to use)..When I am first invited into a potential  client’s home,  and after we discuss when the home owner would like to sell their home and where they are planning to move to, I like to offer some data on the most advantageous times of the year to sell around that wish date), and I always check on the property taxes. If the home is being overly assessed then that could impede a sale, and so an important factor (if time allows) is  to reduce those taxes before marketing the home.

After we have chatted a little,  discussed the market, etc.  I like to tour the home , and discuss the various updates, renovations, repairs required, etc. We will also be discussing any open permits, etc. Everything should be in order prior to listing your home.

Most of us like to ‘save’ things, and so it isn’t unusual to find some clutter and wonderful storage  areas   packed with so many memories.  I will always ask if they will be moving to a smaller abode;  in which case,  they would need to either place items into storage and/or  give to family members/have an estate sale or  throw some items away.  There are also wonderful companies that will assist  for those estate sales, and the Furniture Sharehouse will always take  furniture/ beds, etc., in good condition (and they charge just  $50 for the truck service – but all tax deductible).  Ron’s Trucking is another great company who will cart away all of those unwanted items, or move your items to your storage facility. I can also recommend companies than can organize tag and estate sales also. 

I am usually asked for recommendations on how to prepare the home. If the home is cluttered, and requiring professional experience, I will offer my home presentation expert (aka the home stager)(  into  the home, and pay for the initial consulting expenditure. Usually the home stager will walk around the home with the owners and myself,  offering sage advice such as  which paint colors to utilize (if required), which pieces of furniture to remove, where to place the furniture, and basically  great advice.  Obviously, not everyone can afford to paint rooms,  and my home stager will work with anyone’s budget, from advising my clients to staging herself (at the home owners’ s expense). After the initial consultation and given advice, the home owner can continue the dialogue at their expense  with my stager if desired. 

Sometimes, if the home is older, it is to the home-owner’s advantage to have a pre-selling inspection as this will reveal any issues within the home that can be addressed before the home is marketed, and thus will  just increase the sales price too!  I also suggest an appraisal if we are endeavoring to  establish a certain price point for the home. I use a local appraiser who knows the area well,  and sometimes when I am selling in neighborhoods with fluctuating price points, this is a very important. You don’t want to be in contract, and the buyer’s bank brings in an appraiser from upstate or the Island who does not know the area, and undervalues the home. I always submit a report to the appraiser too but at the end of the day, it is always up to the appraiser.

Why not sell the home “As Is”.  That term basically implies that there are issues within the home.  So be  careful before using it. If desired, we can always  state that, but it is always my goal to produce the highest sales price for my clients, and so based on that, I always some offer suggestions .

Typical suggestions could be painting,  floor refinishing,  cabinet painting,  kitchen updates,  asbestos removal, etc.

For any home resale there should be clean windows, touch up painting undertaken,  perhaps some power washing,  planting some flowers,  utilizing white linens on the beds and in the bathrooms (I usually supply those linens and towels!), and making sure there are working light fixtures!  SO many times, I show up with the photographer only to find there are missing light bulbs!

What  will be the listing price?  I always sit down with my clients,  and we look at the features of your home, compare those features, size of home, property size  in conjunction with other homes that have sold in the area recently, and establish a marketing price range for your home.  It is not advisable to compare your home to a neighbor’s home, and think yours is better/nicer simply because you don’t like your neighbors (that has happened) or you truly think your home is nicer.  The stats do not lie…I always try to look at a home as if there is a buyer looking over my shoulder.. Younger  buyers  today love central air conditioning, gas heat,  new kitchens, and in general are extremely fussy, and so bear in mind that these homes usually sell quicker than  homes that require the updates.  Second time home-owners are more forgiving (as has been my experience) ,  and many times love to renovate themselves, but oft times, they bid accordingly also  (lower…) so beware.  So, you have decided to sell, an introductory price range for your home based on local market stats has been arrived at,  and now what?

I (or your agent) will give you a marketing plan. It is always nice to know what to expect and when.  I order a professional photographer (always – even for a rental!),  and the photography usually takes up to a week from booking to having the photos taken, and then the delivery of same. Brochures must then be ordered, so if time allows, this whole process usually takes 2 weeks, but we can always rush things if required! With money you can do anything! I absorb the cost of the brochures, floor plans and professional photography, and just ask that the home be photo ready when I arrive with the photographer.  The photographer usually has appointments scheduled throughout the day, and so there is no time to re arrange furniture, etc.

Introducing your home to the market!

I am the only agent in the area who creates a personal web site for her clients.  I post the floor plans,  a video of the property, local area links and videos to the site,  and within 2 days of posting , it can be found on the first page of Google. I can then send a link to prospective buyers who have firsthand information regarding your home. Great!

I like to introduce the home at a Broker’s open house, perhaps serving luncheon or refreshments, and a Public Open house that following weekend is permissible with the owners. The whole goal is to create excitement, a ‘buzz’ around the property and to generate as much interest as possible. The first two weeks are usually the most important weeks for a listing and so  pricing is important.  You want as many appointments as possible within that time period, so people bid !

Showing your home

When there are pets, I will offer to show the seller’s home so the home owner feels comforted in knowing I will not let their loved pets outside the home. If the home owner desires, it is always my pleasure to open up the house too so I can turn on the lights, make sure the doors are locked, and in general make the home owner more comfortable during the process. Obviously, I will know more about the home than another agent, and so it is always an advantageous opportunity in which to point out the key elements and upgrades of the home.. (We always have a Special Features sheet also if possible).

We always try to give the home owner advanced notice, and it is usual to request a 2 hour advance notice. However, sometimes, the agents will be in the area,  just think of your home, and might call at the last minute. If it works out, always good to say ‘yes’ to the appointment! Many times,  if they can’t get in, they will just move onto the next home.. Obviously, if they really want to see your home, they will make another appointment but being flexible is important.

Bidding …  We receive bids! We are always taught that a bid is not  a bid unless it is in writing with proof of funds (pre-approval, bank statements if cash)..However, I will always let you know immediately when we receive a bid, or perhaps if an agent will be submitting a bid. It is always good to hear!

Once there is an acceptable offer, the buyer(s) will order an inspection,  and a Memorandum of Sale is drawn with the terms, the sales price, and is sent to all parties ( agents and attorneys). I will always copy you, the seller!

The Inspection. Tell your agent if there are any quirks within your home. It will save questions at the inspection. Also, it is always a good idea to have copies of recent maintenance handy so the inspector can see the home is well tended.

The  Contract  Your attorney will prepare the contract, and he/she will be asking you for your Title Insurance and House Deed so it is always good to be prepared beforehand! If you are selling a coop, then he will require the Offering Plan that should have been given to you at your closing.

It is always important to make sure that your attorney will be around for the ensuing few months. You don’t want to be in contract, ready to close, and your attorney is cruising around the world! I would ask how long will it take after you close to receive all of the closing documents… You don’t want to wait a year for same and you will need them for your taxes.

As a Realtor, I am not allowed to discuss/alter a contract – I could lose my license!  SO, any contractual questions must be discussed with your attorney.. Also, the date for an estimate closing date within the contract is just an estimate. However, in order for a contract to be a contract, an estimated closing date is required.

Once the contract is signed by all parties, it is a fully executed contract, and the buyer then send a copy to his/her mortgage broker, and the mortgage process ensues. The buy(s) usually have  30-45 days in which to  obtain a mortgage commitment. However, sometimes an extension is requested and your attorney will discuss that with you should it be needed.

The buyers  will be obtaining  an appraisal for their mortgage, and this is why we price a home based on local market conditions.  You need the home to appraise, and the bank will be looking at recent sales, etc.  An appraiser will appraise a home based on 3 factors.  Recent market sales,  home condition, and costs to rebuild.

The Closing!  The home appraised,  you have already interviewed various moving companies, and via your attorney, you have scheduled an estimated closing date..   My clients always ask me for the closing date, and as a rule I am the last person to know! The attorneys must schedule the closing date and time around their schedules, the Bank’s schedules and YOUR schedule! I am informed after the date has been set.

Don’t forget to close your accounts with your various utility companies be it Con Edison, oil company (have the oil level read by them), water company, etc.

The buyers will be having a final walk-thru before the closing. At this point, your home should be empty, broom swept clean, and if you are really busy – perhaps  a professional cleaning service utilized.

Buyers as a rule always like to learn of the gardener you use, etc. so it is also nice to have a list of same ready for the buyers too, together with any appliance warranties you might have.

Congratulations. You sold your home!

I hope this information has been of use to you.  It might seem like a lot of information to absorb, but  as a Realtor, I am here to make the process as easy as possible for you!

Westchester is GREAT!

 

 

 

 

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It’s Gingerbread Time 2016!

It is always a great feeling to give something made from the heart! I love to make some gingerbread homes and give them to friends and clients alike!  I don’t make them each year, but when time allows, it is fun!img_1295

Happy Holidays!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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New Rochelle is GREAT!

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The New Rochelle Chamber of Commerce & Modern Restaurant and Lounge

untitledimg_1261Always having appointments, and accommodating clients, I arrived late for the New Rochelle Chamber of Commerce Holiday party at Modern Restaurant and Lounge in New Rochelle (but not too late to donate some toys for the Salvation Army “Be an Angel program” ).  I understand it was a great evening made possible by the generosity of the Chechile family.img_1262

Since it was so late, I decided to order some fare at the bar!  I ordered a spicy Zuppa Di Pesce, and I must admit the ambiance was great within the restaurant. I understand from my friends the food is always tasty, and the restaurant offers the perfect setting for family gatherings. There are also some private rooms for those special occasions img_1265  too!

New Rochelle is GREAT!

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107 South Road, White Plains – GREAT Condo alternative

A real find! Beautiful, 2 bedroom single family contemporary ranch on a large, lush, leveled lot! The open floor plan features many renovations throughout. One year old roof, stylish renovated kitchen with new appliances, modern bathroom, separate formal dining room and a sunny, large living room. one car garage and lower taxes make this home a must see! This rare find is sitting on 0.17 of an acre, and is located in the historic area of Parkway Gardens! convenient to shopping, fine dining and just 5 minutes from downtown White Plains! STAR savings are $1307.

This great home is being offered at $420,000.

Westchester is GREAT!

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Open House Today- 161 Forest Avenue – New Rochelle 1-3 p.m. 12/18

dsc06268Welcome home to this 4 bedroom, 3 bath 3700 Square foot Mediterranean on 0.41 of an acre located in prestigious Forest Heights. There is an in-ground swimming pool, a large over sized family room with skylights, living room with fireplace, and don’t forget to enjoy the wonderful sauna that seats 10 in the lower level. The large eat in kitchen offers a Viking stove, Subzero Refrigerator, Island and exudes warmth and character! The Master Bedroom is huge with a walk-in closet, and an en suite beautifully renovated bathroom in earth tones. and don’t forget the sitting porch. Three additional bedrooms, and a wonderfully renovated hall bath with a claw foot tub await your bathing pleasure.gays-pool

 

Close to fine dining, trains and just 35 minutes to New York City. The neighborhood also boasts a home owners association where you can get together for pot luck dinners. Perfect! There is a public open house today from 1-3 p.m

New Rochelle is GREAT!

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Local Professional Beautician – For those Special Occasions and more!

img_5625You are attending a wedding? A photo shoot? a Bat/Bar Mitzvah? an engagement party? Anniversary? or even that special date!  How about you are seeing your ‘ex’ at an event and you just want to look your very best! Ha!

There are times when we all need to simply special, and that is when we should call Jacqui Arboleda, a fantastic Professional Beautician who has been serving the Beauty and Cosmetic Industry in the high end luxury line for the past six years.  Jackie serves Westchester and New York City, and her contact information is as follows:

914 434-5371 

Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s in Larchmont had a photo shoot today, and of course we called Jacqui for her professional services!

Westchester is GREAT!

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Small Business Day – every day in Larchmont!

15241372_10211389582365443_7326115430345775826_nSaturday, November 26th was officially named Small Business Day, and both Jane Murray ( a great associate in the Larchmont Julia B. Fee Office) , and Carolyn Fugere (President of the Larchmont Chamber of Commerce and Manager of the Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s Office)  were out and about  in Larchmont being very busy elves shopping in many of the stores! However, it shouldn’t be just one day. There are wonderful gifts to be purchased throughout Larchmont every day!15109598_10211381139394374_4763899196262335328_n

Happy Holidays!15220137_10207717468119262_4669034868629884688_n

 

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Your Garbage – Someone else’s Treasure/Helping Others!

gift-boxesMy friend calls it ‘dumpster diving’, but in being a Brit, I would rather call it ‘finding a treasure’. However, the fact remains that so many wonderful, expensive, GREAT items are put by the wayside for garbage pick-up, when so many people would be THRILLED to receive any one of them.

I was driving around Bedford last year previewing a home and I noticed two wonderful bar stools by the roadside. Oh my goodness! They were Western in design, and I have a fondness for the South West ! They fit nice and snug into my car, and all I had to do was to recover the seats. Perfect! My friend has a young grand daughter, and another on the way, and so if I see a great toy here or there,  I appropriate same! I have delivered to her a beautiful rocking horse, a tricycle,  a Barbi doll house (valued at a few hundred dollars),  and walkers, etc… However, if I hadn’t seen those items, would they have reached the garbage dump and languished there?

What else can someone do?

New Beginnings.  Help some Westchester homeless families. 165 Main St. Ossining Open Door. 914-923-4889 (voicemail). Donation hours Mondays 9:30-12:00. Items accepted: kitchen items, small houshold good, household linens, baby linens, children’s clothing up to size 10, children’s books. New Beginnings is a non-profit organization that provides basic household essentials to homeless families and individuals making the transition to permanent housing.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Westchester. Pick-Up Available. Call 1-877-399-2570. Will accept clothing, some household items, some small electronics. Consult website for list: www.bbbsdonate.org. I can recall donating my time to this worthy organization  many, many  years ago..

Furniture Sharehouse.  ” Furniture Sharehouse, a not-for-profit organization, provides these individuals and families with the basic household furnishings they need free of charge, enabling them to rebuild their lives with dignity” . Accepts furniture in good repair for families in Westchester County who have need. Will accept sofas (no more than 80” long), armchairs, mattresses (no stains), kitchen/dining room tables, dressers, bookshelves, lamps, small electric appliances, mirrors, televisions (no more than 5 yrs old), clean area rugs. Furniture pick-up available for 3 large items and a suggested $50 donation. Drop-off locations include the Warehouse at Westchester County Airport. Call for hours: 914-834-1294 or email at info@furnituresharehouse.org. Website: furnituresharehouse.org.

The Sharing Shelf, 47 Purdy Avenue, Port Chester. Run by Family Services of Westchester. Distributes children’s clothing to those in need.

“The Sharing Shelf was founded to meet this need. We collect and distribute new and gently used clothing in sizes from newborn through XXL, for children and teens from infancy through age 19. Volunteers meet in our Port Chester warehouse where donations are screened then sorted them by size, season and gender. Social workers, therapists, teachers, attorneys and others working with low-income families in our community submit requests for their clients. Our volunteers then create packages filled with a week’s worth of seasonally appropriate clothing matched into outfits according to a child’s sizing needs.

We also seek donations of other basic supplies including gently worn or new shoes, strollers, pack-n-plays and new school supplies (see our “Backpacks to School” program)”

Habitat for Humanity. Habitat for Humanity operates two local re-stores. Donate working house parts to locations in New Rochelle or Mount Vernon. Pick-up service can sometimes be arranged. Fax a photograph of your items with your contact information to (914) 636-8592 in New Rochelle (telephone number (914) 636-8335). Store is located 524 Main St. New Rochelle. Mount Vernon store is at 2 Cortlandt St. Telephone: (914) 699-2791. Email a photograph of your item to restorewestchester@gmail.com to see if you can arrange a pick-up. Used household items are also for sale at these two locations. You can also donate your car to Habitat for Humanity. Call (800) 237-4344 to arrange a pick up. HFH works with a third party to sell cars; proceeds are used by the charity. A tax deduction receipt will be available based on the sale price for the car.

Another way to help – make a donation –

Lifting Up Westchester – helping our neighbors in need

The United Way

The Hope Community Services – so many hungry people in every community…

Your local Religious organizations… churches, synagogues, mosques… call and I am sure they would welcome donations also..

Westchester is GREAT!

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