Reflecting 2019

It’s hard to believe another year is drawing to a close.  Have you reached all your goals?

Wow! When I hear that question I immediately think of business, and career; but those are not the most important goals to me these days.  Every morning my husband and I enjoy praying together and spending a moment in the word.  We pray for each of our seven children.  We pray for extended family, and friends.  We pray for our community and those we know are in poor health, or in need.  We pray for our clients, customers, and tenants.

This has not always been so, but since we began taking these quiet times together each day our relationship has grown.  Our businesses have prospered, and our situation in life in general has improved for the better.

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We enjoy spending time with family and friends.  We enjoy helping each of our children succeed and pursue their dreams.   If you had asked me 5 years ago if my son, Adam would pursue the same line of work as my husband, Charles, I would have doubted that to be so.  But Adam is employed in HVAC construction for Data Centers today.  He earns more than many of his equals with four year degrees.  And he has the opportunity to continue to grow.

We are proud of our College Graduates, and the two soon to be graduating from college.  We just attended the sixth young adults graduation from Nursing School!  How awesome to see her smile because she is ‘Living Her Dream!’

We are blessed with the opportunity to dote on child number seven as he is eight years younger than number 7.  People often ask me if he’s my nephew or grandson.  Hmm, well as I had my first just a few years shy of 30 it would mean he or one of the others started young… thankfully, that is not so.  My nieces daughter is only 6 months younger than daughter #3, but none of our children have children.

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The great thing about having a preteen around when you’re in your 50’s… they keep you young!  They want to go check out fun places like the Fiesta Ware Outlet in PA near his older sister’s home.  Or a trip to the Land of Oz at Beech Mtn, NC.  He doesn’t complain about taking a 4 hour trip to an Aunt’s home in WV to repair her failed heating system.  And he loves to see all that join us at my Sister’s in Ohio for Thanksgiving each year!

The older we get the more we’re able to do that we had on our bucket list.  The more we continue to grow and share with one another and with others.  WE dream about the next decade of our lives and what we hope to accomplish for ourselves and others.  We enjoy dreaming of places we would like to go.

Our lives continue to have ups and downs.  We have been blindsided by college student loans that are not attached to any of our children – and yet we must repay to loosing all our chickens to wild life in the area.  We open our home to others, and to beautiful cats in need of a forever home.

We enjoy learning new games like ‘Llama Drama,’ ‘Cards against Humanity,’ and ‘Jumanji to play with family and friends.  We enjoy home parties where there is no judgement for enjoying a bit of moonshine and a game of ‘corn hole.’   We enjoy sharing our knowledge and experience with others to help them find a home or real estate investments.  Life is the dash between two numbers and Charles and I enjoy living every moment of that dash.  How about you?  http://brokertccooksley.com, realtortccooksley.com

#life, #Culpeper, #Virginia, #Real Estate

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How many times must you hear?

How many times does a Seller need to hear how important it is to CLEAN UP the INSIDE and the OUTSIDE of their house before they understand it effects the value?

Over the last 2 years I have seen thousands of dollars left on the table due to Seller’s choosing not to make the effort too ‘DEEP CLEAN’ the inside of their house or Clean up the Outside of the house!  They always blame the agent because we live in a society that doesn’t not want to be responsible for their own inaction.

As a Realtor, we can ‘ADVISE’ you in the way you should go.  We DO NOT make the decision for you.  Nor do we do all the work for you.  We may help you, or direct you to where to find help.  But, ultimately the work completed is up to you!  Where should you invest your money to get the biggest bang for the buck?  CLEANING INSIDE AND OUT!!

If you have a beautiful home inside, but lots of rundown cars outside, no curb appeal and green algae growing on the side of your house very few people will see inside.  Some will turn away at a door gouged with claw marks, or peeling paint.  Are you creating a scary movie set or are you staging a house for sale?

You may need to drive down the road and come back to your driveway with an impartial look in order to truly answer this question.

You laugh, but I have seen homes listed at the top of the market with clawed up double doors, algae growing on the white vinyl siding, and seedlings in the gutters.  Let’s not mention the junk cars next to the driveway and the pink sofa on the front porch.  People may turn away from this clutter, because they do not want to envision themselves living here.

Your goal as a Seller is to create a vision of beauty to attract a Buyer.  There are two main buyers in today’s market… the Investor, who is going to offer 70% under your list price so they can clean up the house and flip it or rent it fast.

And the second is someone who wants to move-in ready without much work or effort.  This group wants to see the walls painted neutral colors they can live with, and every thing clean and done.  They will pay extra for not having to bring it up to their standards and to have a few newer appliances or a new roof or HVAC system.

So, you need to ask yourself… “am I willing to do what it takes to get Top Dollar for my home?”  Or, “am I content to take less just to get it sold?”

Deep cleaning, doesn’t mean just having a ‘clean home;’  I’ve been in a home that had boxes stacked to the ceiling of the living room.  They were neatly stacked and the walkway to the kitchen was clean and dust free.  But the house was ‘Cluttered!’  I couldn’t see it and it felt dark and claustrophobic!  If you want a ‘decent price’ do a decent job!  Declutter inside and out!

In the photos above one room is empty, but doesn’t show well because the vinyl is old and doesn’t belong in a family room.  In the other the carpet is clean but the shelves and hearth are cluttered.  Less is more when selling a home.  A Staged home sells better than a vacant home… if ‘Staged’ well.

You want a mowed, well kept lawn.  If your front door is scratched… Paint it!  If you can’t paint within the lines – pay someone else to do a great job!  Clean the gutters and siding.  If the roof needs replaced, and you can swing it… do it!  If you have old vehicles in the drive, or off to the side… remove them.  If you have a long drive in need of gravel… get a load of gravel, raked out.

Inside: Clean and tidy goes a long way.  If your Kitchen and Bath are dated, but well done and you have no money to update; Shine the cabinets.  Clean and shine as much as possible.  Pack up or through out anything you can live without.  You want to give a sense of space that has been cared for in every room of the house!  If need be… wipe down walls, remove pictures and priceless possessions from prying eyes.  You can leave a few photos or paintings… but keep it minimal.  Repaint walls that have a lot of scuffs, or are colors wrong for the use of a room.  Neutral color or white is far better than an all black kitchen.  Most people want to have a lot of natural lighting.

Just because HD TV makes it look easy… doesn’t mean that it is.  If you need repairs done it pays to hirer a professional.  They may cost cash up front, however, ask if they’re licensed and guaranty their work in writing.  You want someone to take responsibility for the repairs in the first year after you have sold the house.  If not, the buyer maybe be able to come back after you depending on where you live.  Do you want to take that chance?

 

Rash Season

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I Photo by Rachel Xiao on Pexels.com

It’s that time of year when you want to be out in the yard or garden or enjoy a hike.  You feel invigorated by the Great Outdoors!  Then you wake up the next day to ….  what is it…  loads of itchy, red dots and blisters spread in various parts of your body!

Ugh!  Why didn’t I stay inside?  Why am I drawn outside

only to awake to spots!   If you’re like me, you would rather seek a home remedy rather than run to the doctor.  When the tried and true wasn’t getting quick results I turned to the modern day encyclopedia… yep the Internet.  Loads of ideas and options there.  What kind of cream should I try next?  I was amazed at how common and widespread itchy skin rashes appeared to be on the web.  The conditions is linked to a variety of causes: poison plant life such as: poison ivy, poison oak, sumac, general allergies, eczema, parasites, etc.  Over-the-Counter medicated creams like hydrocortisone or corticosteriod creams, age old standby of menthol or camphor, help tame the itch and clear up the rash.  Oral antihistamines may also relieve itching.  It’s important to note that different causes may require different treatments.  Regardless, the more you’re able to avoid itching the easier it will be to contain and dissolve the rash.  It seems recommended you only use these creams for no more than three weeks at a time.  If a rash continues after that or you have a sever case it is best to seek a health care professional.  Be sure to wash your hands frequently with warm water and soap to avoid spreading.  When all else fails consider it a lesson in patience…. because most rashes do heal if you can bear the itch!

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