Looking to buy a house for the first time? You may want to use some of the strategies that investors use. This includes: what kinds of locations increase in value, what the potential is for improvements, any rental restrictions for when you’re ready to buy your second home, and the best types of investment properties for a first time home.
Home Selling Tips: Staging Your Home
First impressions are crucial, especially when it comes to selling your home. Luckily, there are some easy and affordable upgrades you can do to make your home stand out from the moment potential buyers arrive.
1. Enhance The Curb Appeal
Try some affordable upgrades like pressure washing the exterior, painting the front door or shutters, replacing old fixtures, adding fresh greenery to garden beds and window boxes, and creating an inviting outdoor living area with chairs on the porch or stoop.
2. Kitchen Makeover
Did you know that the kitchen plays a crucial role in selling a house? The good news is that you don’t need to break the bank to make it more appealing. If you’re on a tight budget, you can update the backsplash by using peel-and-stick faux tile, tin tile, beadboard paneling, or painting the existing tile.
3. Minimize Furniture
When it comes to getting your home ready for sale, one of the most important things to focus on is decluttering. A cluttered home can turn off potential buyers, so it’s essential to get rid of any unnecessary items. One way to achieve this is by reducing the amount of furniture in each room. Professional stagers often remove up to half of the furniture in a home to make it look more spacious. This allows buyers to move around the house freely and appreciate its unique features, like a fireplace or built-in bookshelves. By minimizing clutter, you can help your home appear more inviting and appealing to prospective buyers.
4. Rearrange Your Furniture
When it comes to preparing your home for sale, rethinking your furniture placement can be an effective way to enhance its overall appeal. Arranging your furniture in a way that maximizes the space and highlights the unique features of each room can make a big difference.
5. Add An Office Space
With the rise of remote work and homeschooling, having a designated workspace has become increasingly important for many homebuyers. By making efficient use of available space, you can appeal to potential buyers who require a home office without compromising on other essential features of your home.
One important aspect of preparing your home for sale is creating a neutral and welcoming environment that allows potential buyers to envision themselves living there. To achieve this, remove personal items such as family photos and children’s artwork that may distract buyers from imagining their own lives in the space.
Work on these tips and you might just have a potential buyer knocking on your door. Which tip will you do first?
Events in Portland for April 2023
Spring into a month of food, drinks, treasure hunts, and celebrating mother earth. There’s so much to do: here are five of Shawn Realty’s picks.
1. OREGON BEER AWARDS
📅 Apr. 6, 2023 | 📍 Revolution Hall | 💵 $25
Meet fellow brewers, beer lovers and the most exceptional beers in the Oregon Beer Awards! This annual event dubbed the “Academy Awards of Beer” is joined by over 100 experts judging beers of all kinds and in over 31 categories. If you have an appreciation for the drink and craft of beer, grab your tickets and drop by Revolution Hill on April 6th.
1300 SE Stark St #203, Portland, OR 97214
2. Forest Park Trail Treasure Hunt
📅 Apr. 8, 2023 | 📍 Forest Park | 💵 Free
Get ready for treasures and trails at this adventure-filled event! Forest Park Trail Treasure Hunt is not your ordinary backyard easter egg hunt. Seek treasures along one of the three trails available at the event:
- Leif EriksonTrail at the Thurman Lane Trailhead
- Springville Road Trailhead
- Birch Trailhead
Pick up treasures among bushes and trees using GPS coordinates. On April 8th at Forest Park, try this bonding and learning experience that’s perfect for the whole family!
4099 NW Thurman St, Portland, OR 97210
3. Celebrate Earth Day at Tryon Creek
📅 Apr. 21, 2023 | 📍 Tryon Creek State Natural Area | 💵 Free
Celebrate Earth Day through a one-hour workshop hosted by local small business Poppy and Finch. The workshop features the following:
- Native plants short presentation
- Basic planting
- Floral design composition techniques
- Centerpiece decoration
Get creatively soiled at this Mini-Habitat Centerpiece Workshop happening at the Tryon Creek State Natural Area on April 21st.
Tryon Creek State Natural Area
11321 SW Terwilliger Blvd, Portland, OR 97219
4. Baker’s Dozen Coffee, Beer & Doughnut Fest
📅 Apr. 22, 2023 | 📍 John’s Marketplace – Powell | 💵 $40-$65
This festival puts a twist to the popular coffee and donut combo – it adds beer! In the 7th Annual Baker’s Dozen, admission gets you 13 coffee beers, specific coffee samples, 13 morsels of doughnuts and a souvenir glass. Discover a fusion of flavors at the Baker’s Dozen Festival to be held on April 22nd at John’s Marketplace – Powell.
John’s Marketplace – Powell
3560 SE Powell Blvd, Portland, OR 97202
5. Portland Flea + Food
📅 Apr. 29-Oct. 29, 2023 | 📍 Various Locations | 💵 Free
It’s your chance to #SupportLocal at the Portland Flea + Food in Portland, Oregon. The event features 80+ local artists, makers and curators of local products. It will be held every last weekend of the month starting this month until October 2023.
721 NW 9th Ave, Portland, OR 97209
240 SE Clay St, Portland, OR 97214
From 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on the following dates:
April 29 & 30, May 27 & 28, June 24 & 25, July 29 & 30, August 26 & 27, September 23 & 24 and October 28 & 29
Tips for First-Time Home Buyers
Buying a House in 2023
Buying a home for the first time can be complicated. There are lots of steps, tasks, and requirements to follow, and you don’t want to make a costly mistake.
Here’s a rundown of what you should think about before you buy to help you get the most out of your purchase.
1. Improve Your Credit Score
Improving your credit score takes time and effort, but it is possible. Here are some tips to get you started:
- Check your credit report for mistakes – It’s important to regularly check your credit reports for any errors or incorrect information that could be damaging your score.
- Pay your bills on time – Paying your bills on time is one of the most important factors for maintaining a good credit score.
- Keep credit card balances low – Keeping your credit card balances low will help improve your credit score. Try to keep your balances below 30% of your available credit.
- Limit applying for new accounts – Opening too many new accounts at once can have a negative impact on your credit score.
- Use different types of credit – Having a mix of different types of credit, such as installment loans and credit cards, can help improve your credit score.
2. SAVE FOR YOUR DOWN PAYMENT
A minimum down payment will most likely be required, depending on the loan. Expect to pay at least 3% of the property’s purchase price.
How much you’ll put down on your home depends on the type of mortgage you receive. The typical mortgage down payment ranges from 3.5% to 20% of the property’s purchase price.
If you put down less than 20%, you may be required to pay private mortgage insurance (PMI) or other fees.
Things To Know About Down payments
- The size of your down payment has a direct impact on the interest rate your mortgage lender will set for your loan. The larger the down payment you offer your lender, the lower your interest rate may be.
- A larger down payment generally means you’re a less risky borrower, and a less risky borrower means a lower interest rate.
- It’s now possible to get a mortgage for as little as 3% down, although some loans (like Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) loans and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) loans require no money down.
3. FIND A REALTOR AND A LENDER
Real estate agents are home-buying experts who know the local market and can take you to houses that meet your needs in your target area. They make finding the perfect home much easier and faster.
Now is the time to start researching lenders. Ask for recommendations from friends and family and conduct online research to find someone who will work well with you and your needs.
4. GET PRE-APPROVED
Mortgage pre-approval is a critical step in the home-buying process that you should not overlook in 2023. Getting a mortgage preapproval accelerates the lending process. If you find a home you like and need a loan quickly to buy it before another prospective homebuyer does, being preapproved will allow you to secure the purchase sooner.
Lenders will consider several key factors before deciding to pre-approve you for a mortgage:
- DTI Ratio – measures the amount of income a person or organization generates in order to service a debt
- LTV Ratio – is an often used ratio in mortgage lending to determine the amount necessary to put in a down payment and whether a lender will extend credit to a borrower
- Credit History – a record of your ability to repay debts and demonstrated responsibility in repaying them
- Income and Employment History – to check how much money you are earning and your job stability
- FICO Score – are based on the information collected on individual consumers by the three major credit bureaus, including their payment history, credit utilization, and the age of their accounts
5.MAKE A WISHLIST
What kind of home do you want in terms of square footage, features, and so on? Make a list of your non-negotiables.
Are you ready for your dream home? Let Shawn Realty help you find that perfect home for you and your family.
Events in Portland for January 2023
Check out some of Portland’s events for this month!
Portland Boat Show
January 11-15 (Time Varies) | Portland Expo Center | $15
Sixty-third annual Portland boat show featuring fishing boats, ski, wakeboard and wake surfing boats, yachts, cruisers, sport fishers, kayaks, personal watercraft, boating electronics, accessories, marine canvas, propellers, boat towers, boat trailers, and more.
January 11-13, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
January 14, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
January 15, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Check out website for more info
Portland Folk Festival
January 13-15 (Time Varies) | McMenamins Crystal Ballroom | $35 – $90
An annual celebration of folk, Americana, and roots music in Portland, Oregon, hosted by McMenamin’s Crystal Ballroom.
- Ron Artis II
- Eddie Berman
- The June Bugs
- Jacob Westfall
- Karyn Ann
- Fox and Bones
- Lo Steele
- Adrian + Meredith
- Dead Lee
- The Singer and The Songwriter
- Laryssa Birdseye
- Eddie Berman
- Christopher Worth and David Jacobs-Strain
- The Hackles
- Flyover States
- Redray Frazier
- The AM (Acoustic Minds)
- Jessica Manalo
- Lane Norberg
- PFF Song Contest Winners
Part of the 2023 2nd Annual Portland Music Month. ticket includes a donation to MusicOregon’s Echo Fund, which provides creative project grants for local independent musicians. Your check-in at the show will also enter you into sweepstakes to win prizes.
January 13, 6 p.m.
January 14, 6 p.m.
January 15, 2 p.m.
Rose City Classic Dog Show
January 19-22 (Time Varies) | Portland Expo Center | Cost Varies
More than 170 AKC breeds are judged in competitions such as Best of Breed and Best in Show. Other events include agility, obedience, Trick Dogs, Temperament Testing and more are also featured in the Rose City Classic Dog Show.
Check out website for more info
Candlelight: Classical Concert Series
January 16, 25 & 26 (Time Varies) | Location Varies | $40 – $60
Candlelight concerts featuring From Back To The Beatles, Holiday Special and The Best of Beethoven.
Candlelight: From Bach to The Beatles
Location: World Forestry Center Discovery Museum
Schedule: January 16, 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Candlelight: Holiday Special
Location: Alberta Rose Theatre
Schedule: January 25, 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.
Candlelight: The Best of Beethoven
The Old Church Concert Hall
January 26, 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.
Star Wars vs. Star Trek
January 21–22 (Time Varies) | Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall | $25+
The Oregon Symphony plays John Williams’ iconic Star Wars main theme and the “Imperial March” to music from The Wrath of Khan to the newest Star Trek films.
Jeff Tyzik, Conductor
January 21, 7:30 p.m.
January 22, 2 p.m.
Chinese New Year Lantern Viewing
January 26-29 & February 2-3 (5 p.m. – 8 p.m.) | Lan Su Chinese Garden | $15 – $45
The Lan Su Chinese Garden celebrates the Year of the Rabbit with traditional lantern viewing, which also is accompanied by an illuminated dragon precession by Portland Lee’s Association Dragon and Lion Dance Team. Also, there is a Year of the Rabbit Chopstick Challenge.
January 26-29, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
February 2-3, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.