Blog :: 10-2020

Attract Buyers with Energy Efficient Upgrades


Going green and investing in environmentally-friendly products is not only great for the health of the environment but it can also have an impact on the value of your home. Waltham Real Estate Agents have found that homebuyers of all ages are looking for eco-friendly upgrades when searching for a home. There are many easy eco-friendly upgrades that will help sell your home. Here are a few suggested by a Waltham Realtor


Smart Thermostats

Something as simple as upgrading your thermostat can make your home feel newer, smarter, and more tech-savvy. Smart thermostats interact directly with your home systems. Once the smart thermostat is installed and it is in use for about a week, the thermostat will pick up the patterns of the homeowners and be able to adapt to their behaviors. This will help minimize energy consumption in the home. Waltham Realtors claim that people will spend three to five percent more for a home that includes smart features.


New Windows

A lot of older homes have old windows that are poorly insulated. By simply upgrading your windows you will be able to save more energy and maintain a more consistent and comfortable temperature in your home. It was found that homes with energy-efficient windows save up to 12 percent on their annual energy bill. Waltham Real Estate Agents say this simple upgrade will make your home highly marketable to potential buyers. 


Upgraded Insulation

Old or ineffective insulation can definitely lead to higher energy bills. This is because the cold or heated air may be flowing in and out of your attic. Waltham Realtors say that investing in a new and proper rated insulation system is always very attractive to buyers. A new and improved insulation system will reduce the need for extra heating and air conditioning which will obviously lower overall energy costs. 


Tankless Water Heater

Tankless water heaters are attractive when buying a home because they only heat water when needed, unlike other water heaters that use unnecessary energy to store hot water. Most models of tankless water heaters last about 10 years so investing in one right before you put your house on the market can really attract buyers. Waltham Realtors claim that tankless water heaters can also help homeowners save up to $100 a year. 


Solar Panels

Waltham Real Estate Agents say the biggest eco-friendly upgrade you can make for your home is to invest in solar panels. Studies have found that each watt of solar adds about $3 to a home’s value. This could bump up your home value by $15,000! 


Contact a Waltham Realtor

Whether you want to make small simple upgrades to your home or fully dive in with solar panels, a few eco-friendly upgrades will definitely appeal to homebuyers that are looking to save on future energy costs. If you’re looking to buy or sell a home in Waltham, MA reach out to a Waltham Real Estate Agent today! Waltham Realtors have years of experience assisting buyers and sellers in getting the best deals. Contact Waltham Realtor, Hans Brings today by filling out a contact form or giving him a call at 617-968-0022.


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    How To Buy A House If You Have Student Loan Debt



    A lot of millennials have yet to purchase a home of their own. Studies have shown that this is mostly because of student loan debt. These debts have been holding back millennials from purchasing a home for two reasons. One reason being they have a higher debt-to-income ratio in which most lenders stay away from. The second reason is that it’s harder to save for a down payment while paying these loans each month. 

    Fortunately, while it may be difficult and a bit of a longer process, Waltham Real Estate Agents are here to say that it is possible to buy a home while still paying student loans. Here are the steps to take suggested by a Waltham Realtor to help you navigate the process of buying a home while still in student loan debt. 


    Step 1 - Improve Your Debt-to-Income ratio

    The best thing you can do to improve your chances of getting approved for a mortgage loan is to lower your debt-to-income ratio. Waltham Realtors say that this is one of the most important factors that lenders look at when evaluating your application. This is because they want to make sure you have the income to pay your mortgage payment each month on time. Here are some ways to improve this ratio:


    • Pay down your debts wherever possible. Work on shaving down not only your student loan debt but also your credit cards and any other balances you may have. Waltham Real Estate Agents suggest using tax refunds, bonuses, or any other extra money to make more of a dent in these loans. 
    • Increase your income. You can work to increase your income by asking your current job for a raise. If asking for a raise isn’t possible, consider a second job, side hustle, or freelance work. Any type of extra income can make a big difference. 
    • Refinance your student loans. Refinancing your student loans can help lower your monthly payment and interest fees. 


    Step 2 - Increase Your Credit Score

    Credit scores are another thing that plays a big role in your mortgage application. Your credit score gives lenders an insight into how well you pay off your loans and debts. The higher your credit score, the more likely you’ll be approved for a mortgage says a Waltham Real Estate Agent. Make sure you are paying your student loans consistently and on time each month as this will help increase your score. You can also increase your score by: 

    • Lower your credit utilization rate. This rate is how much of your total available credit you’re using. The less available credit you’re using, the higher your score will be. 
    • Pay all bills on time. Make sure to pay every bill you have on time every single month. Late payments are simply not good for your credit score. 
    • Don’t close any credit cards. Another important aspect of credit is your credit history. The longer you have been building your credit the higher your score will be. Even if you have a card that is paid off and you don’t use it anymore, do not close the account.


    Step 3 - Get Pre-Approved for A Mortgage Before You Look for Houses

    Waltham Realtors always urge the importance of getting pre-approved before you start house hunting. Getting pre-approved before house hunting will give you more insight into what your budget is. Also, a pre-approval will show sellers that you’re serious about purchasing a home. 


    Step 4 - Consider Assistance for Your Down Payment

    If your student loans and other bills are making it hard for you to save up for a down payment, there are other options available. Waltham Real Estate Agents suggest considering assistance programs to help you with your down payment. Do some research on assistance programs to see if you qualify for any and if they can help you! 


    Step 5 - Look into Loans and Programs for First-Time Homebuyers

    It’s possible for you to qualify for first-time homebuyer mortgage programs in addition to down payment assistance programs. These programs help immensely by lowering interest rates and some require no down payment at all. These programs could be a big help when buying your first home if you have a ton of student loan debt weighing you down. 


    Contact a Waltham Realtor

    If you’re a first time home buyer and still have student loans, contact a Waltham Real Estate Agent for assistance! A Waltham Realtor will take the time to sit with you to discuss your options and figure out what can work for you so that you are able to purchase a home! Fill out a contact form or give us a call to set up a time we can discuss your first-time home buying options!


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      4 Easy Things to Do This Weekend to Increase the Value of Your Home



      With the pandemic still going on, you probably have more time on your hands during the weekends. If you’re looking for productive things to do to keep you busy, why not make some easy home improvements to increase the value of your Waltham home? Increasing the value of your home doesn’t always require expensive tasks. Waltham Realtors suggest these 5 easy home improvements that can be done in a weekend that have been proven to add value to homes. 


      1. Grab A Paint Brush

      Most Waltham Real Estate agents agree that a good paint job goes a long way when improving the value of your home. Repainting the outside of your home, certain rooms, or even every room is an easy and cheap way to majorly upgrade your home. Paint can freshen and liven up a room and it also cleans up any stains or scuffs on your walls. Waltham Realtors suggest using neutral colors like whites and beiges for both the inside out outside. 


      1. Change Your Hardware

      If the hardware in your home looks to be a little outdated, it may be time to replace them. Hardware such as door handles, cabinets, faucets, sinks, etc. should be on the newer side if you’re looking to have them help you increase your home’s value. Replacing your hardware is easy, fast, and inexpensive which makes it a great weekend project! Waltham Realtors highly suggest this easy upgrade as it is one less thing a buyer will have to do, making it more likely for a buyer to make an offer. 


      1. Power Wash the Outside 

      People often forget to clean the outside of their homes since they spend most of their time inside. Giving the outside of your home a good power wash is a great and extremely easy way to upgrade your home to look brand new again! Nowadays, people are mostly searching for homes online which means your listing photos play a crucial role in selling your home. Waltham Real Estate agents suggest power washing your home before taking listing photos. This can help your home really stand out online. 


      1. Steam Clean the Carpets

      Deep-cleaning your home will increase the value of it, but Waltham Realtors suggest paying special attention to the carpets. Waltham Real Estate agents say that dirty carpets may cause the buyer to wonder what other things around your home have not been maintained well. Take the time this weekend to deep clean your carpets so they look fresh and brand new. 

      Contact a Waltham Real Estate Agent

      If you’re looking for assistance in selling your Waltham home contact Waltham Realtor, Hans Brings! Hans will walk you through the process and let you know exactly what you should be doing to prepare your home for sale. Fill out a contact form or give Hans a call at 617-968-0022.


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