Ari Koufos
REALTY EXECUTIVES | 617-799-8948 | ari@arikoufos.com


Posted by Ari Koufos on 5/21/2019

Looking to sell a house for the first time? Ultimately, your home's curb appeal may dictate how quickly you can proceed along the home selling journey.

Typically, a house with an awe-inspiring exterior will make a great first impression on homebuyers. This means homebuyers may become more likely to pay attention to this home over others and submit an offer that matches or exceeds a home seller's expectations.

On the other hand, a home that has a messy, uncut front lawn, cracked and chipped exterior paint and other exterior problems is unlikely to generate substantial interest from the right groups of homebuyers. As such, this home may remain on the housing market for an extended period of time.

Lucky for you, we're here to help you upgrade your house's curb appeal before you add your residence to the real estate market.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you bolster your home's curb appeal and increase your chances of a fast, profitable home sale.

1. Take an Objective Look at Your Home's Exterior

For first-time home sellers, it is important to do everything possible to guarantee that a residence stands out from the competition. And with a few simple home exterior improvements, a home seller can improve a house's curb appeal quickly.

Home exterior maintenance like mowing the front lawn, clearing debris from walkways and trimming the hedges can make a world of difference in the eyes of homebuyers.

Also, if you want extra help with home exterior tasks, don't hesitate to reach out to landscaping companies or other home exterior maintenance professionals. These home exterior experts should have no trouble helping you transform an ordinary home exterior into a dazzling one.

2. Conduct a Home Appraisal

A home appraisal offers a wonderful opportunity for a first-time home seller to identify potential home exterior issues and address such problems without delay.

During a home appraisal, a property inspector will assess a house both inside and out. He or she likely will spend several hours analyzing a house's strengths and weaknesses. Then, when the property inspector's evaluation is complete, he or she will provide a report that details the assessment findings.

A first-time home seller should analyze a home appraisal report closely. By doing so, this home seller can find out what it takes to upgrade a house's exterior and map out assorted home improvements accordingly.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

If a first-time home seller is unsure about how to improve a house's curb appeal, consulting with a real estate agent is ideal. This housing market professional can offer honest, unbiased home exterior improvement recommendations to help a home seller bolster a house's curb appeal.

Furthermore, a real estate agent is happy to respond to a home seller's concerns and questions throughout the home selling process. He or she will serve as a home selling guide and do everything possible to help a home seller achieve the optimal results.

Take the guesswork out of boosting a home's curb appeal – first-time home sellers can use the aforementioned tips to enhance a house's curb appeal in no time at all.





Posted by Ari Koufos on 4/9/2019

As a home seller, it is important to do everything possible to ensure your house impresses buyers. If your residence makes a positive impression on buyers, you could speed up the house selling process. Plus, you may be better equipped than ever before to maximize your house sale earnings.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you transform your home from drab to fab and ensure your residence garners lots of interest from potential buyers.

1. Upgrade Your House's Curb Appeal

Your house only gets one chance to make a positive first impression on buyers. Fortunately, if you enhance your home's curb appeal, you can make the most of this opportunity.

Completing assorted home exterior upgrades may help you make your residence stand out to buyers. For instance, mowing the lawn and trimming the hedges will help you quickly improve your house's front lawn. You also may want to repair any cracked or damaged home siding.

2. Eliminate Clutter

There may be no time like the present to remove unwanted items from your house. Because if you eliminate home clutter, you can show off the full size of your living space to potential buyers.

To cut down on home clutter, you may want to host a yard sale or list unwanted items online. This will allow you to simultaneously get rid of unwanted items and earn extra cash.

You can always donate unwanted items to a local charity, too. Or, you can give unwanted items to family members and friends.

3. Clean Each Room of Your House

An in-depth home cleaning is a must, particularly for an individual who wants to enjoy a seamless house selling experience.

When it comes to cleaning a home, there are lots of options at your disposal. For do-it-yourselfers, you can allocate time and energy to mop the floors, wipe down countertops and perform other house cleaning tasks. On the other hand, if you want extra help, you can hire a professional home cleaning company.

As you search for ways to stir up interest in your residence, you may want to employ a real estate agent as well. If you have a real estate agent at your side, you can get the help you need to expedite the house selling journey.

A real estate agent knows the ins and out of the home selling journey and can help you plan accordingly. First, he or she will meet with you and learn about your home selling goals. A real estate agent then will put together a plan designed to help you achieve your goals without delay. And if you ever have concerns or questions as you navigate the home selling journey, a real estate agent is ready to respond to them.

Want to get your house ready for the real estate market? Take advantage of the aforementioned home selling tips, and you could reap the benefits of a fast, profitable house selling experience.





Posted by Ari Koufos on 4/2/2019

For home sellers who want to do whatever it takes to enhance a house's interior, depersonalization is key.

By depersonalizing a house's interior, a home seller can make it easy for a homebuyer to envision what life might be like if he or she purchases a residence. That way, a home seller can increase the likelihood of a fast, seamless and profitable home selling experience.

Effectively depersonalizing a home's interior can be simple – here are three areas that a home seller needs to consider to depersonalize a house's interior:

1. Photographs

Although photographs of loved ones, celebrations and family vacations may hang throughout your residence, now is the right time to take them down if you're selling your house.

Removing photographs from all walls and shelves is necessary to effectively depersonalize a house. In addition, don't forget to hide any photographs located in a home office.

2. Antiques

Antiques are beautiful treasures that deserve to be displayed. However, if you're selling your house, it may be worthwhile to temporarily store these items outside your residence.

When it comes to antiques, it is always better to err on the side of caution. If you have priceless treasures that need to be removed from your house, you should allocate the necessary time and resources to store them properly. This will enable you to minimize the risk of damage to your antiques while you sell your home.

In some instances, renting a storage unit for your antiques may prove to be a great idea. Or, if you have a family member or friend who has extra storage space available, he or she may be able to hold your antiques until your residence sells.

3. Artwork

Awe-inspiring artwork can help you show off your unique personality. But if you have bold paintings, sculptures or other artwork in your home, you may want to remove these items while your house is listed on the real estate market.

Artwork sometimes can be distracting, and as a result, may make it tough for homebuyers to imagine what life could be like if they purchase your house. Also, if artwork takes up lots of space, it might be difficult for homebuyers to see the full potential of your living space.

If you need help with depersonalizing your house's interior, you should reach out to a real estate agent for support.

A real estate agent understands how to showcase a residence to homebuyers. As such, he or she will offer honest, unbiased recommendations to help you depersonalize your residence's interior and ensure your home will capture homebuyers' attention.

Furthermore, a real estate agent can serve as your guide along the home selling journey. He or she will set up home showings and open houses, negotiate with homebuyers on your behalf and respond to your home selling concerns and questions at any time.

Ready to depersonalize your house's interior? Consider the aforementioned areas, and you can give your home's interior a fresh look and feel before you list your residence.





Posted by Ari Koufos on 2/5/2019

You got a reverse mortgage on your home to help with your retirement, but now, you want to move out. Maybe its because your kids want the house, or it just doesn't work for you anymore due to the climate or just how far away your family lives. Makes sense, when you were younger your life changed all the time, that doesn’t stop after retirement. So, are you stuck? Or can you sell it?

First, what is a Reverse Mortgage? 

A "reverse mortgage" is a special form of home financing that pays out based on the equity of your home. While you continue living in the home, the loan pays either a single lump sum, as a line of credit, monthly payments, or in some combination thereof to help cover the cost of your retirement. In the United States, the home must be the primary residence, and the homeowner must be over the age of 62 to qualify. While originally started to allow seniors to keep a more stable income, the IRS doesn't see it that way and instead looks at the income as a "loan advance" and taxes it accordingly.

Paying off Your Reverse Mortgage

Typically, the point of a reverse mortgage is for the income. That means you defer payment of the loan until you die, though it comes due when you sell the home or if you live elsewhere for a whole year. That means it usually falls to your heirs to handle it. They can pay it off, refinance it or sell the home. As a last resort, they can give up the property to the lender in place of repayment, but they give up all the rights of ownership to the property. Its possible to get a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) from the FHA restricted to the value of your home. This type of loan protects your heirs since the mortgage can't be more than the value of the house, which means all they have to do is hand over the property and they are free and clear.

Selling Your Home Under the Reverse Mortgage

Selling your reverse mortgaged home can be complicated. Your reverse mortgage compounds interest over its whole life on both the owed interested and the borrowed amount. That means the mortgage could be substantially higher than the original borrowed amount. If you want to sell the home, no matter if its family or open market, first start by figuring out just how much remains on the mortgage. Include the whole borrowed amount, owed interest, compounded interest and any fees your lender may charge. Double check that number by requesting a payoff amount from the lender. They will send you an estimated payoff amount based on your current status and will only apply for a specific date range. Keep in mind that regardless if you sell the home for the original amount, if it takes longer than you originally planned, those numbers could go up.

Want to know if your home is a good candidate for a reverse mortgage sale? Refer to your local real estate agent to find out if the market value of your home is high enough to make it a good idea.





Posted by Ari Koufos on 12/4/2018

Selling a home may be difficult, especially for those who plan to list a residence for the first time. Fortunately, many real estate agents are available to guide you along the home selling journey.

Although there is no shortage of real estate agents at your disposal, it is important to note that not all real estate professionals are created equal. Therefore, it is essential to allocate the necessary time and resources to find a real estate agent who can help you achieve your home selling goals.

What does it take to find the right real estate agent to help you sell your residence? Here are three tips to ensure you can do just that.

1. Review the Current Housing Market

Take a look at homes that are currently available and the real estate agents who are associated with these properties. That way, you can find out which real estate agents are available in your area.

Also, don't forget to assess recently sold homes in your city or town. This will allow you to learn about the real estate agents who sold various houses and how long it took these housing market professionals to finalize the property sales.

You can always search the web for real estate agents in your area too. By doing so, you may be able to view client reviews that can help you determine whether a particular real estate professional is the right choice.

2. Consult with Friends and Family Members

Friends and family members sometimes can provide insights into their past home selling experiences. As a result, they may be able to connect you with a real estate professional who will go above and beyond the call of duty to assist you.

Furthermore, neighbors may prove to be great resources as you search for the perfect real estate agent. If a neighbor recently listed or sold his or her residence, you may be able to work with the same real estate agent.

3. Meet with Several Real Estate Agents

When it comes to finding a real estate agent, it never hurts to have a face-to-face conversation.

Set up meetings with several real estate professionals. This will allow you to learn about a real estate agent's background and expertise and decide whether you feel comfortable working with this individual.

In addition, try to get client references from real estate agents and reach out to past clients to find out what it was like to work with a particular real estate professional. As such, you'll be better equipped than ever before to make an informed decision.

The search for the right real estate agent often requires hard work and patience. With the right approach, you can hire a real estate agent who can help you accelerate the home selling journey and optimize the value of your residence.

Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and you should have no trouble employing a top-notch real estate agent.