Welcome to the Good Life

Ann Marie is your real estate expert! With a career spanning over 30 years Ann Marie knows what it takes to deliver results! Check out her videos below for some valuable information on buying and selling a home!


Your Market Update for 2018

The 2018 numbers mean great things for next year.

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The numbers are in, and to finish out the end of the year, today we’ll be going over a quick market update for 2018.

The average sales price is up 7% and inventory is down 5.9%. We anticipate that prices will continue rising, meaning it will soon be a great time to sell. To get an idea of what your home could sell for, we can give you information about your specific neighborhood, as well as help you figure out how to meet your real estate goals as a seller. If you’re looking to buy a home, we can help as well—either way, just give us a call.

In the meantime, we hope you enjoy a very happy holiday season and spend plenty of time with friends, family, and loved ones.


How to Get Up to 18% More When Selling Your Home: Part 5

In the final part of our series, we’ll discuss negotiation.

Interested in buying? Contact us to view all listings

Today we’re back with the fifth installment of our series on how to earn up to 18% more money when selling your home. This time, we’ll be discussing the part that can make the difference between getting extra money in your pocket or none at all: negotiation.

Negotiating is as much an art as it is a science. The art comes from my 30 years of studying and dealing with homes and prices, but there are specific steps to follow in order to get the most for your home. We’ve seen clients earn up to 18% more than what they originally thought they would, thanks to negotiation tactics and the strategies we covered in previous videos.

One of the best ways to get top dollar for your home is to price it to sell. Doing this from the outset gives you the power in any negotiations you have with buyers. When your home is priced well, you’re likely to see multiple offers, which gives you the luxury of negotiating prices further. Even if you don’t experience these situations, buyers will still be concerned that someone else will come along to seize the opportunity you’re providing. Because they don’t want to lose out on a great deal, they’ll be more willing to meet your needs.

Starting your home at the correct price gives you the ability to choose when you want to close, what you’ll pay in closing costs, and what you’ll eventually sell your home for.

If you have any questions about negotiation, want to buy or sell your home, or need any information, feel free to call us. We look forward to hearing from you.


How to Get Up to 18% More When Selling Your Home: Part 4

In the fourth part of our series, we’ll discuss marketing your home. 

Interested in buying? Contact us to view all listings

Today, we’re back with the fourth installment of our series on how to earn up to 18% more money when selling your home. This time, we’ll be discussing the part that really helps our sellers get more out of their home: marketing.

We market our homes on three levels: internationally, nationally, and locally. Because of our contacts, we’ve been referred to people who are new to the area and looking for local expertise. We see our listings on real estate websites that are focused on the international market.

We also belong to strong national networks and see a few referrals each month. These referrals come from other agents who send us business from another part of the country. Our marketing department does a great job making sure our listings are seen on a national scale. Our relocation department sold over 530 homes last year.

On a local scale, we simply apply our many years of experience and build interest the old-fashioned way. This means hours spent on the phone, connecting with potential buyers and sellers.

The connections we’ve developed help us market our homes to people anywhere in the world and ensure that many potential buyers will get the chance to see your home.

If you have any questions about our marketing, want to buy or sell your home, or need any information, feel free to call us. We look forward to hearing from you.

Next time, we’ll be covering negotiation on a home.


How to Get Up to 18% More When Selling Your Home: Part 3

In the third part of our five-part series, we’ll discuss pricing your home.

Interested in buying? Contact us to view all listings

We’re back today with the third installment of our five-part series on how to earn up to 18% more money when selling your home. This time, we’ll be discussing the part that really helps our sellers get more out of their home: pricing.

When finding that perfect price, you need to make sure you’re getting pricing advice from someone with integrity and knowledge about the market. Some agents have a tendency to only tell you what you want to hear, so it’s important to have the information and guidance needed to make an informed decision.

By simply pricing a home strategically, we can get a seller can get at least 10% more for their home. We look at where homes are selling and price ours slightly less than those on the market, but slightly more than ones that have sold. Recently, we were able to get a seller $20,000 more than what their previous Realtors thought the home was worth. Market knowledge is an invaluable tool.

It’s just as important that your Realtor has the integrity we talked about. Otherwise, you may be tempted to go with someone who can sell your home quickly but for much less. You want to go with the agent who both understands the market and isn’t just trying to get hired by telling you what you want to hear.

If you have any questions about pricing your home strategically, want to buy or sell your home, or need any information, feel free to call us. We look forward to hearing from you.

Next time, we’ll be covering how to market your home.


How to Get Up to 18% More When Selling Your Home: Part 2

 In part two of our five part series on how to earn up to 18% more for your home, we’ll be talking about the three strategies our team uses to boost a property’s presentation.

Interested in buying? Contact us to view all listings

Today, we’re back with the second installment of our series on how to earn up to 18% more money when selling your home. This time, we’ll be discussing your property’s presentation.

There are three key tasks our team takes on to make sure our clients’ homes look their best on the market:

1. Staging. Homes that are staged sell much faster and for between 2% to 3% more money than those that aren’t.

2. Taking professional photos. In conjunction with other media, like videos, photos generally act as a buyer’s first impression of your property. Great photos lead to higher levels of exposure and, ultimately, higher levels of success.

3. Giving your home online exposure. The value of boosting a listing through the internet cannot be overstated. In this day and age, social media and other online platforms are ideal places to advertise a listing.

If you have any other questions or would like more information, feel free to give us a call or send us an email. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

 


How to Earn 18% More for Your Home: Part 1

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I’ve put a lot of energy into studying home prices over the last 30 years. Now, thanks to those decades of experience, I’ve developed a strategy to help my clients earn up to 18% more when selling their home than they ordinarily would.

There are five main tips that go into this strategy, and today we’ll be looking at the first two of them. We’ll be covering the rest in future installments, so be sure to keep an eye out for those updates.

For now, let’s discuss the first of our five tips, which is to prepare your home before you sell.

Sellers can earn between 5% to 7% more for their home by following just this one tip. With that in mind, though, you may be wondering what kind of preparations are involved in getting a home ready for the market.

This is where our team’s “upgrade analysis” comes into play. When you work with us to sell your home, we will guide you toward the improvements that we believe will bring you the highest return on your investment.

Once you have the first step out of the way, you can move on to the second, which is to order an inspection up front.

After you get an offer on your home, 80% of the negotiating power is transferred into the buyer’s hands. By ordering a home inspection before accepting an offer, you’ll be able to retain greater control once it comes time to negotiate. Ordering an inspection before listing your home will give you the chance to identify and resolve issues on your own time and your own terms.

If you have any other questions or would like more information, feel free to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.


The Importance of Using Local Mortgage Professionals

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You’ve heard the expression “stay local” – so I wanted to bring in a 30-year local real estate veteran in Ann Marie McManus to talk about the importance of having a local pro by your side when dealing with something as monumental as a mortgage.

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With the advent of the internet, Ann Marie says, we see a lot of people searching online to check rates. While it’s a good way to get knowledge, it’s not a great way to decide who is going to finance your home. She always recommends that you use a local mortgage company, because it’s such an important relationship. They will advise you long-term, and provide accountability.

It’s a topic that should be taken seriously. You need a lender you can rely on when it’s time to move and the only thing between you and closing the deal is the lender. Are they going to stay late and make sure the i’s are dotted and the t’s are crossed? Ann Marie also stresses the importance of local underwriters.

Ann Marie certainly knows how to leverage mortgage expertise and where to find the best professionals in Augusta. You can reach her at 706-481-3800 or visit her website.


What Does It Mean to Right-Size?

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Over 30 years, Ann Marie has seen attitudes change about downsizing in the surrounding area. She refers to the process as “right-sizing” since many people aren’t looking to necessarily downsize, but to find the right-sized home.

Once children are moved out, there could be a whole different set of features that you look for in a property. Maybe you’re looking for something more upscale or for more storage space, for things like a boat or a canoe.6.7

Make a list and prioritize what is most important for you. Is it location? Is it the design of the home, such as a floor plan? Are you looking for specific outdoor spaces and features? Less lawn space? Once you’ve compiled a concise list, contact Ann Marie.

She loves helping people make such a big change in their lives. Although it’s a bit of a process, it’s rewarding when clients are finally moved in and pleased with their new lifestyle.

If you’re thinking about buying or selling an Augusta home, give Ann Marie a call or send her an email. She would be happy to answer your questions!


Which Online Real Estate Resources Are Trustworthy?

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There are so many real estate tools and resources online. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with the overload of information. However, the Internet can provide valuable information you wouldn’t otherwise have. Which ones can you trust?

Ann Marie’s website, AnnMarieMcManus.com, is a great resource for the surrounding area. Particularly, she has the opportunity to connect with those interested in buying, that aren’t currently in the area. T5.24his is a stressful process, and she knows how to mediate it as a tailored professional. Thankfully, all of her former out-of-town buyers are now pleased Augusta homeowners!

These days, photography is so beautiful. You can have both pictures and videos. It ultimately allows you to see inside a property comprehensively through virtual tours. You don’t need to be there physically to get a feel for a home.

On the flip side, you need to be extremely careful about accurate information. Just because it’s online doesn’t mean it’s true! For instance, we run into this issue often with Zillow’s Zestimate tool. Sometimes, it can miscalculate your home’s true worth and misguide you as a result. A home value is too important of a factor to base a decision off the Zestimate.

If you’re thinking about buying or selling an Augusta home, reach out by phone or email. Ann Marie would be happy to answer any questions you might have!


Tips for Hiring the Right Augusta Real Estate Agent

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It’s amazing how competitive the real estate industry is. There are over one thousand real estate agents in the greater Augusta Board of Realtors. How do you know to pick the right one?

You need to ask a lot of questions. First, ask how long they have been in real estate. It’s important to know what kind of markets they have experienced. For example, have they worked in a rapidly moving market? That could come in handy in our current market, as prices are rising quickly.

Do they have the skills to handle the market when things get tough? Over the past few years, agents have learned how to navigate new appraisal guidelines, lending guidelines, and more. An experienced agent knows how to be successful in a declining market as well as a rising market.

We also recommend asking the agent how many transactions they completed the previous year. Nationally, the average agent only sells 4 homes a year. Of those 1,000 Augusta real estate agents, a lot of them are part-time.4.26

It’s important to know how many transactions a Realtor has done because then you have an idea of how active they are in the current market. Every day, there’s something new to learn in the real estate industry. You want to make sure your agent sells often enough to help you be successful in your transaction.

Ann Marie has over 30 years of real estate experience and has sold over 1,500 homes. Experience matters. If you have any questions, give Ann Marie a call or send her an email. She would be happy to help you!