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7 Traits that Make a Good Realtor Great

Posted by admin under Real Estate

Working with a great real estate agent is a lot like finding your ideal home in that what’s good for you might not be good for the next family. Just as certain home features may be more suited to your needs, the character traits of your agent need to complement your own personality. But when it comes to choosing an experienced and professional realtor, a handful of qualities are definite winners.

 

Before you commit to working with anyone, it’s a wise idea to check the facts. Great reviews and testimonials, a good understanding of the current market, and being able to “click” with your agent are all important. Cross-reference this list to make sure you’re teaming up with a real pro!

 

Qualities of a Truly Great Realtor

 

1. Top Performers

 

Indianapolis-Realtor_Professional Home Matters Staging-1805Buyers and sellers both benefit from working with a real estate agent who is a real star in their industry. For this job, you’ve got to go with someone who’s been around the block. Realtors who consistently close more deals than the average agent in their area are clearly the ones to watch. When you ask about their stats, it’s important to pay attention to how long they’ve been in business, as well as how many clients they regularly service. Evaluating these details will help you feel confident about working together—no matter what side of the table you’re on for the closing.

 

2. Trusted Network

 

Many realtors rely on specific referral partners to help keep their listings on track. Great organizational skills are required for managing everything from professional home staging services to cleaning the home, making minor repairs, and scheduling tours. Oftentimes, getting these tasks done right means outsourcing to the experts and having a close-knit team. If your agent is trying too hard to be a “one-person show,” you might be missing out on some of the benefits of having a realtor with a trusted referral network.

 

3. Patient Listener

 

Good-Real-Estate-Agent_Home Matters Staging-1805It’s always important that your agent pays attention to you and your family’s wants and needs. Honoring your must-have list for a new home and being able to listen and honor your timeline will make purchasing or selling your home so much easier. A good listener will even be more likely to match your ideal type of communication style—whether that’s sharing updates via text, phone call, or email. A patient realtor always pays off!

 

4. Wholehearted Honesty

 

Of course, all those good listening skills have to be put to good use in other ways, too. Not all real estate agents can give you the honest feedback you’re looking for, yet this is a valuable part of making an informed decision. Your big transaction will benefit from having your realtor share some hard truths. Is your dream home riddled with expensive repairs? Does your listing need professional home staging to make a better impact for buyers? These suggestions might sound frustrating, but a great realtor will know how to break the news to you in a kind manner.

 

5. Easily Adaptable

 

Great-Realtor-Traits_Home Matters Home Staging-1805The best realtors can handle just about any real estate situation with ease. Because they’re quick to adapt, you can relax and feel good about where you’re headed. You can also think of this trait as being a quick and creative problem-solver. When your real estate agent is able to look at properties and buyer and seller agreements with a critical eye, your experience should be relatively hassle-free. If you notice any signs of a short temper, you might be better going in a different direction.

 

6. Community Expert

 

A great real estate agent will also have a good grasp of the community where they live and work. In a lot of ways, you’re looking to have a tour guide for your new neighborhood, right? Your agent should be able to point out great community events around town, tell you about the good restaurants and shops nearby, and help paint the picture for what life might look like where you’re thinking to move. The same goes for sellers. If your agent is informed about the area’s latest trends, they’ll know how to help stage your home to attract the right type of buyers.

 

7. Magnetic Personality

 

If all the other qualities are met, the last thing to check for is whether or not you “click” with your realtor on a personal level. When talking with your realtor gets you in a good mood, you’re definitely on the right track! After all, it takes more than just skills to become a great real estate agent—you’ve got to have the personality to match. While this will look different from person to person, if you can find an agent that speaks to you on a deeper level, you should be set for a great experience.


2018 Real Estate Trends for Midwest Homeowners

Posted by admin under Real Estate

We all know that the real estate market has ebbs and flows. What’s tricky is trying to predict the outcomes! Fortunately for homeowners in the Midwest, the market has been following an optimistic trend. All signs point to strong sales throughout 2018. Here are just a few of the things to get excited about as we enter the real “hot season” for buyers and sellers.

 

The Strong Midwest Economy

 

Kitchen Dining Staging-Home Matters 1804Friendly neighbors, safe communities, and hospitality are all staples of the Midwest persona. Yet living in this region comes with some other practical perks, too. Real estate in the Midwest has remained steady in recent years for its great cost of living, higher wages, and relatively low unemployment. In fact, the Midwest is slated to hold its reputation of being the most affordable area in the country, according to one 2018 Housing Market Outlook report. Buyers get a great amount of square footage for their budget, and sellers can enjoy a solid return on their home investment.

 

That’s probably part of the reason why a couple key Midwest cities were included on Amazon’s Top 20 List for its new headquarters’ location. In addition to power players like Chicago, Denver, and Philadelphia, we also saw Columbus, Ohio and Indianapolis, Indiana make the list. That’s high praise for the Midwest! And while Indianapolis may not be the final pick, the city isn’t out of the question. The quality of life here gives new residents—and long-time Hoosiers alike—access to plenty of great food, entertainment, and school systems. And with plenty of home options around Central Indiana, there are different price ranges for everyone!

 

Home Sales in Indiana

 

Most experts agree that millennial buyers are revving up for 2018, and it’s not just couples and young families that are ready to become homeowners. The millennial market shows a strong trend for single buyers that’s likely to continue in the near future. Settling down in the Midwest is a great choice for this generation. These buyers can often get “more house” for their money, plus all the amenities of living close to a major city, whether that’s Minneapolis or Indianapolis!

 

Indiana Real Estate 2018-Home Matters 1804The Indiana real estate market in particular is experiencing a great start to the year. Central Indiana saw existing-home sales jump over 8 percent in February 2018—even though the inventory has been slimming down and prices have been rising. This is a nice continuation on the 5 percent boost that the average home sales price had in 2017. All evidence leads to an exciting time for sellers. Consider this: The average time on the market in 2017 was just 66 days. That’s nearly a 15 percent drop from the 2016 numbers. With professional home staging, your listing could sell even faster this year!

 

Even luxury homes in Indianapolis are seeing an uptick. In 2017, almost 150 homes in the $1 million price-point (and higher) were sold around the city. That’s a massive 143 percent jump from the 2012 numbers, when only 61 luxury homes were sold. These types of listings often take longer to sell because there are fewer buyers in this elite market. That’s a big part of why this boost in sales is encouraging to see. It’s a good indicator that the Indiana economy as a whole is poised for success.

 

A Great First Impression

 

Of course, even in a strong housing market there’s still competition. Sellers need to put their best foot forward if their home is going to grab the attention of this fast-paced environment. Buyers don’t want to settle for sub-par, so it’s important to have eye-catching pictures or at least a welcoming walk-through when potential buyers come to see your listing for the first time.

 

Master Bath Staging-Home Matters LLC 1804One of the best ways to make a great first impression in today’s real estate market is to work with a professional staging company for your home. Your listing deserves to be styled with a wow factor that suits your home’s architecture and main features—like a great master bath! The investment can quite literally pay for itself multiple times over, so there’s no reason to skip this step. Let our home stylists make your house a 10/10 for your target market.

 

A little staging can go a long way to help buyers imagine life in your house, so don’t keep your home ignored on the market. Contact Home Matters today to schedule your consultation!


Welcome Spring with Simple Home Design Updates

Posted by admin under Home Design

When the trees start getting new buds and the first spring flowers begin poking out of the ground—we know spring has sprung! Yet all too often, our home’s interiors don’t reflect these seasonal changes. While our main pieces of furniture should take center stage year-round, it’s important (and fun) to mix things up with the changing seasons. A few quick home design updates can help each room match the calendar month.

 

Stay Fresh with Centerpieces

 

Fresh-Centerpieces-Spring_Home Matters 1803Key focal points of your home (like your front door, fireplace mantel, and the dining room table) deserve a refresh once spring rolls around. Consider adding a white-twig wreath to your front door, or make a statement with new spring planters. If your front porch curb appeal is order, then it’s time to take another look at your centerpieces indoors. You’ll want to make sure each of your family hangouts has a distinct springtime feel.

 

Candles and pinecones are great for autumn, but home design in spring does best with a little more greenery. Go with live plants for your dining room centerpiece. A pretty orchid or a collection of succulents can change the entire ambiance of a room. Your fireplace is the same way. The pieces you use to decorate don’t have to be a permanent installation. Your holiday décor gets swapped out, so do the same with your other pieces. Maybe there’s a pale-pink vase, or other accent that you love. If it doesn’t fit with your autumn or winter themes, why not just set it out during springtime? It can be the main feature for your fireplace mantel during this part of the year!

 

Use Cooler Tones for Accents

 

Cool-Home-Accents_Home Matters 1803Deep jewel tones are great for the colder months because they help our homes feel more intimate and cozy. But we’re not necessarily looking to stay “comfy cozy” in March through May. As the days start to warm up though, it’s nicer to switch to cooler tones for accents. So, why not change your décor to suit your mood? Living room and bedroom spaces get a better springtime vibe when we swap darker hues for light blues, pastels, and other colorful patterns.

 

Changing a new paint color multiple times a year isn’t realistic. But it’s so easy to rotate your accent pillows with the seasons. Plus, these design upgrades are instant! Just put your pillows with warmer tones in storage for a few months of the year. You’ll have a completely new feel for your spring décor. The same goes for paintings. Switching up what’s on your walls throughout the year is a great and relatively inexpensive way to keep each room intriguing. You won’t get bored with your home when you can make minor design upgrades on a whim.

 

Find Comfort in Lighter Fabrics

 

Spring is all about feeling light and airy. Before you settle in for another season with the same home designs, take a look at your curtains and bedding. Do you need to trade in your heavy curtains for something a little more sheer and effortless? We want to mentally block out the cold weather in the wintertime, but once April hits, it’s good to lighten things up.

 

Light-Fabrics_Home Matters Staging 1803Rotating your bed linens with the seasons isn’t just practical—it’s also a stylish design choice. You don’t have to rely on the bare essentials for your bedding. Instead of putting your down comforter in storage, why not substitute it with a new quilt or linen throw? A blanket that looks and feels more appropriate for the season can help you appreciate your space even more—and look forward to getting a great night’s sleep. Sometimes, it really is the little things that make the biggest difference.

 

Part of everyone’s spring cleaning routine should be to clean up their home décor. If you feel like your home is in a design rut this season, you can always give Home Matters a call at (317) 774-7025. One of our stylists would be happy to help you out! There are so many design tricks to help your house feel more like a home. Let us know if you want to schedule a consultation, and we’ll find the perfect solutions to make your space feel bright, fresh, and new for the season!


Model Home Staging and Buyer Psychology

Posted by admin under Home Design, Real Estate

A good home builder knows that the right layout, location, and curb appeal will attract buyers. But how do you really make a house into a home? For most people, deciding to build it’s all about the details. Model home staging is what ties everything together.

 

Home builders that choose to work with a professional staging company get a real edge over their competition. Utilizing the right furniture only enhances your designs. (Plus, it helps make your marketing materials really pop.) A fantastic floorplan isn’t always enough to seal the deal, so staging helps you paint the whole picture. By complementing your homes’ unique architecture and beauty with a few accents, it’s easy to win over today’s homebuyers.

 

Model Homes in the Modern Market

 

Living-Model Home Staging_Home Matters 1802We live in a digital age, which means buyers are spending more time online to search for a local home builder. Investing in professional home staging can help your specs stand out from the crowd. Great photos present that clean, polished image your buyers want for their new home.

 

Home builders carefully select the floorplans and models for their neighborhoods, and your staging company should be just as thoughtful in their own design selections. Consider the demographic of your target market. Does your staging actively attract that same sort of buyer, or does it miss the mark? The key for model homes is to present your designs and custom home building options in their best light. You want your home tours to feel comfortable and inviting in every room—and every corner. Understanding the real estate market in your area should inform your architectural choices just as much as your staging company’s aesthetic.

 

The Psychology of “Everything in its Place”

 

Office-Model Home Staging_Home Matters 1802Staging is so important for model and spec homes because it’s hard for most buyers to imagine life in an empty space. Although model homes are new and clean, buyers aren’t usually able to wrap their head around when to do with a totally open area. Every room needs to have a clear and defined purpose. Otherwise, people may not know what to do with the space.

 

Questions like, “Is this room going to fit my furniture?” or “Where are things supposed to go in an open floorplan?” are common for both new and experienced home buyers. Staging is a great tool because it answers these questions with a quick glance. As buyers walk through a staged spec home, they don’t need to worry about these same design questions. Seeing furniture already in place will showcase how cozy and versatile every room can be.

 

Giving that move-in ready vibe has a huge appeal, but empty rooms aren’t usually the solution. Define spare bedrooms as a guestroom or office space to help buyers use their own imagination for how to use your layout. Being able to see exactly how furniture should be used in the room offers huge advantages. That way, no area of the home will feel “wasted.” And that just makes the new home lifestyle look even more appealing.

 

Set the Tone with Professional Home Staging

 

The new home market is picking up steam in recent years, which means home builders need to set themselves apart. In order to capture the attention of today’s buyers, more builders are relying on professional staging to complement their floorplans. Staging can have an incredible ROI for home builders. Even staging one model home can have a huge impact on your area’s market.

 

Bedroom-Model Home Staging_Home Matters 1802Vacant rooms don’t have the wow-factor that staging brings. By setting up each room to look its best (in person, and online) your model home will definitely get the attention of more buyers. You can even work with your professional staging company to update small pieces through the year so the home feels “in season” for each tour. Warm, velvet pillows on the living room sofa are great during winter, but you might need to swap them out for bright floral patterns in summer. Every detail counts with a home’s architecture—don’t let the home’s staging go to waste!

 

If you’re interested in working with Home Matters for your existing spec homes, or even an upcoming design, please give us a call (317) 774-7025. Our design packages for builders are a great way to keep your walk-through tours fresh and inviting every season. Visit our Facebook page to see additional samples of our work, then send us a message to get started on your consultation. We look forward to hearing from you!


Modern Home Office Design: Balancing Productivity and Personality

Posted by admin under Home Design

Making a resolution to streamline your work space is a smart way to kick off the new year. Just about any space in your house can be converted into a command center or home office. It’s all about having the right pieces for your personal style—and a vision for getting good work done.

 

Start with the Office Essentials

 

Professional Design Home Office-Home Matters 1801All too often, having good organizational skills means you know how to compartmentalize chaos. But is that a good thing? When re-designing your home office, it’s best to stick to the basics. Whether you need a place for the entire work-week, or just a quiet spot to pay the bills and manage your flood of emails, your home office should be calm, clean, and collected. The less items you have, the better you’ll be able to focus on the task at hand. That may mean you need to invest in a new desk that’s sized right for your room and your comfort. Maybe you really do need a different bookshelf to add some character, or a nice painting to brighten up your space.

 

But other times, you might need to downsize. A healthy perspective on what it’s actually necessary to your process will keep your home office looking more like a zone of productivity than a clutter-magnet. It helps to think twice about purchasing an additional filing cabinet or an extra set of storage containers. Putting things in neatly labeled boxes can sound like “organizing” at first, but just be careful. You don’t want a habit of collecting old papers to eventually turn into hoarding.

 

Call on Home Comfort

 

Another thing to remember when creating your home office is that you can bend the traditional rules. You’re not in a commercial building—you’re at home! So even though the room is designated for work, you can still play around with cozy, homey pieces.

 

Comfortable Home Office-Home Matters-1801Since you aren’t sharing the space with other colleagues, you won’t have to exercise the same considerations of working in a shared space. For example, you can light a scented candle without any chance of offending anyone. You might even think of setting up a system for the radio or other music to play while you work through your schedule—so long as it helps you to mentally “stay in the zone.” And if you want your canine or feline friends nearby, no one can stop you from adding a cushy pet pillow by your desk. While you’re at it, consider giving yourself a relaxing spot of your own. Can you make room for a comfortable armchair? Transforming one corner of your office into a cozy nook can be a great way to unwind between calls. It might also become the ideal spot or get ready for the day with a cup of morning coffee.

 

Incorporate Your Personal Touch

 

Personal Home Office Style-Home Matters 1801Remember: The rest of your home reflects your personal style, so don’t let your office turn into a completely stark and bland version. Your office is obviously a distinct place in your home, but you can still have it connect with the rest of your space by staying true to what feels “you.” Once you’ve paired down to your office essentials and found the items that help make your space relaxing, be sure to mix in pieces that are a little more unique, too.

 

Playing with different wallpaper and styles of lighting are a great way to make your home office look and feel one-of-a-kind. What’s the point of having a workspace that’s cookie-cutter like all the rest?  It’s much more fun to have a sense of style.

 

If you need help pin-pointing the ideas for your personal space, you can always bring in another set of eyes. Our team of professional designers at Home Matters would be happy to help! Consultation packages are great for homeowners looking to have a better flow throughout every room—especially in those spaces that are tricky to figure out. Send us a message to get started, and we’ll work together to find the perfect setup for your lifestyle.