The Home Buying and Home Selling Puzzle: The Final Steps

If you’ve read our last blog about home buying and home selling, you understand that the process takes time and planning. The first steps are primarily focused on financial information. The following steps, however, focus on getting your home ready for the market.

Professionally Staging Your Raleigh Home

Emotion plays a powerful role in the home buying process. To bring in the buyers, we can recommend a professional home stager to create a strong sense of home. This means straightening up the house, getting rid of clutter, re-painting and decorating, to name a few.

Inspecting and Appraising Your Raleigh, NC Home

A pre-inspection by a licensed home inspector can alert you to potentially pricy home repairs. This is good to do early, so you don’t have a major expense at the last minute. Additionally, if your home happens to be especially unique, you might want to get it pre-appraised. We can negotiate a low cost pre-appraisal, which will be reimbursed at closing. This step can help protect your budget as you look to buy a new home.

Focus on the Sell Before Buying A New Home

If your budget requires you to sell your current home before buying another, you should probably put more of an effort in the home selling process. You don’t want to fall in love with a house you can’t buy right away. Focus on getting the most out of your current home, and then looking for a new place to live. It is never a good idea to buy a home before you have a contract on your current home.

Have a Back-Up Plan

If you have a tricky home buying and home selling situation, it’s a good idea to have a plan to fall back on. Be sure to set up a consultation with one of our agents. We can provide you with plenty of information and back up plans that come with home buying and home selling.

The Home Buying and Home Selling Puzzle: The First Steps

If you’re planning on selling your home and buying another one in the Raleigh, NC area, you’ll want to read over these helpful hints before you make your move. By following these steps, you can save yourself a lot of time and stress.

Set Up A Consultation

Talk to an experienced listing agent right away. The listing agent will not only put your house up for sale, but also work toward making your real estate goals a reality. To get the most out of your consultation, bring a recent mortgage statement. This will help the listing agent determine the net proceeds from selling your home.

Get Your Finances In Order

Knowing what you can and cannot afford is crucial in the home buying and home selling game. Having a budget that clearly defines closing costs, moving expenses and home staging expenses can give you an idea of what you need to sell your home for and the money you need in order to buy your new home.

Talk to a Trusted Mortgage Lender

Pre-qualifying for a mortgage will provide you with a price range for your new home. You can also find out if you can buy a new home without selling your current one, or if you can choose to rent your current home as you look for a new one.

Making the Pieces Fit in the Home Buying and Home Selling Puzzle

If you have questions about home buying and home selling, please get in touch with our representatives. We would be happy to explain the steps to you in more detail. Contact our office today!

The Home Buying and Home Selling Puzzle: Defining Your Situation

If you’re planning on selling your home and moving into a new one in the Raleigh area, you might feel a little overwhelmed. The thought of buying a new home can be exciting, but no one wants to think of paying two mortgages at the same time. In order to limit the amount of stress in a situation like this, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

What Type of Puzzle Are You?

To use a metaphor, home selling and home buying is sort of like solving a puzzle. Some puzzles are simple, with only a few pieces. Others have many pieces that take more time to solve. Knowing your current situation (or knowing what type of puzzle you are) can determine the risks and flexibility involved in the transaction. Here are some examples that range from simple to complex.

The Simplest Home Buying and Home Selling Puzzle

If you are selling your home and do not need the money from the sale to buy a new home, you are in a highly preferred situation. Although this doesn’t happen often, this provides you with the greatest flexibility and options. The only thing you need to do is qualify for a new loan from a trusted lender.

It’s still a good idea to think through your financial future if you are in this situation – even if you have the money upfront, would you be able to afford additional payments or surprise expenses?

The 100-Piece Puzzle –A Common Home Buying and Home Selling Situation

If you need to sell your current home in order to make a down payment on your new home, you are in the same boat as many Raleigh home sellers. Our agents have had the most experience in this situation and can help you through it, one piece at a time. You may not be able to move in to your new home right away, but we can help you meet your home buying-home selling goal in time.

The 1,000-Piece Puzzle – A Challenging Home Buying and Home Selling Situation

These situations typically call for more patience and planning. Here’s an example of a more difficult home buying and home selling venture:
I am moving out of the state in one month. The home I live in now needs to be sold fast and for a high profit. My company will not provide me with the funds to support two mortgages, and my savings will not allow me to keep both homes afloat either.

The 5,000-Piece Puzzle – A Very Challenging Home Buying and Home Selling Venture

These situations often involve many factors with strict deadlines that require an experienced professional. Here’s an example:
I am going to get married soon and would like to buy a house with my fiance. We own our own houses, and we need to sell both before we can buy a new one. We need to sell quickly (before the wedding) and for a high profit so we can put a down payment on our new home.

Finding a Home Buying and Home Selling Professional

If you can identify with one of the situations above, please give us a call. We would be happy to work through your home buying and selling puzzle. Contact us today!

Interior Decorating Tips for Your Raleigh Home

Whether you’ve recently bought a new home or you’re planning to redecorate, we’ve got several tips just for you. Find out how to bring out the best in your Raleigh area homekitchen

Choosing the Right Color Scheme in Your Triangle Area Home

Repainting the inside of your home may seem simple enough. All you have to do is pick a color that you like. But making sure that color doesn’t clash with the furniture can be a little bit tricky. Here are a few tips to consider when it comes to finding a good color scheme:

  • Light colors can make a room seem more spacious. Choose light shades for a room where you can entertain guests.
  • Rich, dark colors are great at making rooms feel cozy.
  • It’s never a bad idea to accent a room with color. For instance, if you have a room painted with neutral shades, include brightly-colored curtains or pillows for something more vivid.
  • Finding a paint’s complement or opposite color (like red and green, purple and yellow) can create a bold, inviting contrast.

Create Your Own Personal Space

You can often use decorations that you’ve made yourself to give your home a more personal touch. If you enjoy photography or painting, you can always make use of your own work as a decoration. Choose a frame that accents the color of the wall. Personal artwork can also work to enhance a mood within your Raleigh home.

When Less Can Be For the Best

If you’re thinking of buying new furniture, it’s easy to get carried away. Maybe you’ve found a sofa that matches perfectly with your living room, or you’ve discovered a uniquely-designed coffee table. Before you buy, you should always ask yourself: Do I have the right amount of space for this? Furniture should complement your living space, not detract from it. Too much furniture can make a room claustrophobic. Less furniture can actually make your Wake County home seem bigger than it really is.

Finding the Right Raleigh Home: The Preliminary Steps

Sometimes finding the perfect home can be a challenge. You might have a very different vision for your future home than what your real estate professional is able to show you. To help save you time, we recommend that you take a look at the following tips below. That way, you can have an optimal home buying experience.

Know What You Want: Make a List of Home Features

It is absolutely critical to define what you need and what you want in your new Raleigh home. Certain features or floor plans may be enticing, but your new home should fit in with your daily routine. Consider some of the following questions as you make your list:

  • How Far Will You Have to Travel To Get To Work?
  • How Far Will You Have to Travel To Get The Kids to School?
  • Does Your Home Allow For Major Life Changes Down the Road?
  • Can Your Home Accommodate A New Spouse or Children?

It’s always a good idea to look at the big picture rather than the little details, when you’re beginning your home search.

Know What You Can Afford: Financially Qualifying for a Home

Once you meet with a trusted lender, you’ll know exactly what your home buying price range is. This will help you determine if you can afford all of the wants in your home features list. Start researching Raleigh-area real estate to know how much home you can get for your money. See what features are offered in Raleigh homes for sale and compare with your list of needs.
To help with research, you can always go on Pinterest and ‘pin’ pictures of homes that fit your needs.

Know Who To Work With: Team Up With The Right Buyer Specialist

It’s important to have an experienced professional working in your interest. Trying to go it alone can be overwhelming, and it can be a lot harder to get exactly what you want. With a buyer specialist, you can get the inside scoop about neighborhood amenities, building materials and knowledge of the Raleigh real estate market through the initial consultation. Plus, clients can save a lot of time and money through the services of a buyer specialist.

Staring the Home Buying Process

Have you just started to search for homes in the greater Raleigh area? If you have questions or concerns, get in touch with us today!

Triangle Real Estate Tips : Top Kitchen Design Trends for 2013

Paint Swatch DeckHello!

My name is Ashley and I am the new Director of First Impressions at Linda Craft and Team, Realtors. I am very excited to be part of such a wonderful and knowledgeable group of real estate agents and supporting staff. I will be guest blogging periodically on design trends, remodeling tips, preparing your home to sell, and general ideas on how to make your new house feel like a home.

Here is a little bit on my background:

  • Interior design degree from Appalachian State University (Go App!)
  • Previous interior designer for a hotel development company
  • Working towards a graphic and web design degree in my “free time”

Needless to say I have had to grow an eye for detail. I hope I can offer you my design knowledge in an effort to inspire your next home project and provide staging ideas so you can sell your home!

Ready To Remodel Your Triangle, NC Home?

The Triangle Real Estate market is looking up and many people are spending major remodeling dollars in an effort to increase the value of their homes and make them more appealing to buyers. Remodeling trends are reflecting the new, conservative lifestyle of Raleigh homeowners who are staying in and entertaining at home.

Many experts agree that people remodel the kitchen first and then the bathroom. We do love our bathrooms but let’s focus on the heart of the home, the kitchen!

Kitchen Design Trends That Don’t Require Major Demo

  • Tile It Up – Subway tile backsplash with dark grout is a look that is both traditional and contemporary.
  • Open It Up – People are incorporating open shelving into their standard closed cabinets – a mix of the two might be ideal if you plan to re-sell.
  • Stainless Steel Appliances – still rule! They offer a clean, streamlined look that is sure to work with whatever design aesthetic you choose. Energy efficient appliances are better for the environment AND a great selling point.
  • Two-Toned Cabinets – Example: upper cabinets are white and lower cabinets are gray – be careful with this one and pick colors that are neutral for re-selling.
  • Move Over Granite – Granite countertops are still a favorite but many people are trying out quartz and even concrete with recycled glass to update their kitchens.
  • Take It Outside – The outdoor kitchen is popular as ever and is useful in all seasons.

Check out the National Kitchen and Bath Association’s Top 2013 Kitchen and Bath Trends List.

Looking For More Remodeling Tips?

Need some more inspiration for your Triangle home remodeling projects? Check out our Pinterest page or follow us on Facebook! We have also started an account with, so check out our design Ideabooks!

Peace, love and happy homes!






Summer Gardens for Your NC Home

Whether you’re thinking of selling your NC home or not, flowers and well-maintained plants are sure to make a home more inviting. Especially if you’re trying to attract a potential Triangle area home buyer.  Here are a few plants you may want to add to your Triangle area backyard garden.

Perennial Flowers for the Raleigh, NC area

Coneflowers look a lot like daisies, and can come in different shades like white, pink or purple. Plant them in the spring in well-drained soil with lots of direct sunlight. Coneflowers bloom in the summer and early fall. These perennial flowers will make a great addition to your Triangle area home, and attract beautiful birds like golden finches.

Black-eyed Susans are a cheerful yellow flower with a raised black center. They do well in direct or partial sunlight and require well-drained, moist soil. Some Black-eyed Susans can grow up to three feet tall and grow out up to eighteen inches, so you may want to cut them back if you choose to use them as a border.

Native Shrubs for Your NC Home

The Sawtooth Blackberry is the most common wild blackberry plant in the Raleigh area. When in bloom, the blackberry bush will produce beautiful white flowers. The berries start out red and gradually turn black as they ripen. A word of warning: blackberry bushes can grow very quickly, and the branches of the bushes do have thorns.

The Black Highbush Blueberry buds in early spring and does best in acidic soils. Make sure the bush gets plenty of direct sunlight for best results. And to make sure you get a chance to enjoy your blueberries (and not the birds), put netting over the bush to keep pests out.

Triangle Area Summertime Vegetables

Thinking of starting a backyard vegetable garden? You can plant and harvest these in the summertime around the Triangle area:

  • Basil
  • Snap peas
  • Cucumbers
  • Summer squash
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers
  • Corn
Don’t forget to mulch and water to keep your plants healthy!

Have you started your own flower or vegetable garden? Tell us about it.

Triangle North Carolina Real Estate

Welcome to the Triangle area of North Carolina! Living here is truly like no other experience; not only does the Triangle boast large cities, such as Chapel Hill, Durham, Cary and  Raleigh, but the many small towns, such as Garner, the home of American Idol winner Scotty McCreery, provide the cozy feeling of relaxed, down home living while every amenity, entertainment and business is located only moments from your door. The Triangle, NC region is known nationally as one of the best placed to live. These  qualities make buying Triangle area homes so desirable.

Continue reading “Triangle North Carolina Real Estate”

Foreclosures And The Affect On Children

Children are often overlooked and a silent issue during tough economic times.  This doesn’t mean that they are not still there, or that they do not need our help and attention.  Many of us on the team are parents ourselves and unfortunately see many families, even here in the Greater Raleigh Area, who have had to move out of their home due to unforseen financial difficulties.

Rececently  Julia Isaacs of the Brookings Institute for the Organization First Focus wrote an interesting article titled The Ongoing Impact of Foreclosures on Children. In the report, Ms. Isaacs quantified the number of children that have been impacted Continue reading “Foreclosures And The Affect On Children”