The Laura Strunk Team March Madness Bracket

March 17th, 2015

March MadnessDo you want to enter a FREE March Madness bracket and have the potential of winning Money!!!! The Laura Strunk Team of Keller Williams is running a March Madness Bracket with a ZERO money entry and the top three winners will win $$$$. $100 to our first place winner $75 for second place winner and $50 for third place winner.

HOW TO ENTER:

There are TWO STEPS in order for you to be fully entered and eligible to win the money.

1. Step one Log in and create your account and select your teams. Detailed directions listed below.

Detailed Directions

1. Register as a user at http://www.poolhost.com.
When registering, you will choose a personal username and provide your e-mail address. When you click Join, PoolHost.com will send you an e-mail with a password to login to the site.
2. Login to PoolHost.com with the username you chose and the password sent to you.
3. Go to the ‘Pool Tools’ menu and choose ‘Join a Private Pool’.
4. Choose ‘College Bracket Challenge’.
5. To Join the pool you need to enter the Pool ID and Pool Password.
For the Pool ID type: LauraStrunkTeam
For the Pool Password type: Kellerwilliams
That’s it and then you’re in! The next time you login in to http://www.poolhost.com, you can get back to your pool(s) by going to ‘My Pools’ where you’ll see all the pools you’ve joined. Clicking on a pool name will take you to that pool. You can switch to a different pool by going to ‘My Pools’ again at any time.

2. Step two – Click the link below and fill out the following form with all your contact information. We do this for two reasons – one we need to know how to get your money when you win and two we would like to continue to communicate with you and be your real estate resource in the future.
Click here to finalize your registration!

Howard County Homes for Sale

September 22nd, 2014
Click here to view property grid.

Should I stay at home for the home inspection?

September 19th, 2014

 

Often times sellers ask me if they have the right to be at their home inspection.  The answer is “yes” they have the right but my recommendation is for them not to be at the home inspection.      There are a few reasons why I recommend this for my sellers.

1.   This is the buyer’s opportunity to really get to know the house.   Most likely they only saw the house 1-2 times and spent less than two hours at the home.    A typical home inspection is 2-4 hours and this is really their moment to be introduced to the home.    When the seller is home the buyer has to worry about offending the seller or they may not ask all every question they have to the inspector. This may lead to doubt and uncertainty.  You want the buyer to ask as many questions about the house at the inspection.  When that does not happen the buyer may feel less comfortable moving forward.  Lack of information always means lack of certainty and could lead to the buyer asking for more repairs or backing out of the contract.

2.  Emotions are high for both buyer and seller at this time.  Negotiations just finished and the inspection is usually the biggest hurdle in the process.   When both parties are at the home inspection it is a recipe for an emotional explosion.    Give the situation space.

3.  The seller may end up saying something that causes the deal to fall apart or be sued.    I want to share with a story about this exact situation for one of my past clients.

Fred, a seller of Laura Strunk, decided to stay at the home inspection even though it was not recommended.  Fred had a full price cash offer on his home.   The home inspection was almost complete with no major issues.    The inspector goes up into the attic and comes down and says “I found mold in the attic.”  Fred then makes the following comment “Oh I knew something was up there.”     The buyer’s agent calls Laura Strunk the next day and explains what happened and what the seller said.  The agent then says the buyer is sending over a release and is considering suing the seller because he did not disclose this to the buyer.   When Laura questions Fred on what he meant he explained that he had seen a small spot last Christmas but had the roof checked out and there was no leak and he never knew what it was.    Even though Laura explains this to the other agent the damage is done.  The buyer has no interest in buying the home and does not trust the seller.   If Fred had not been there then this outcome most likely would have been avoided.  Fred was willing to fully remediate and fix the mold which he did and then sold his home for much less. 

4.   It is very hard to sit through 2-4 hours hearing all of the negative things about the home you own and most likely love.    Remember the inspector is not paid to tell the buyer all the great things about the home but instead what is wrong with the home.   Often times sellers will get defensive, offended and/or their feelings hurt.  It is just best to avoid the situation and review the report objectively if and when repair requests are made.

 

So my recommendation to all sellers is use this time to see a movie or go for a walk.  It will have a much better outcome than if you stay at the home inspection.

Your Home Inspection is today . . . now what do I do?

September 16th, 2014

Congratulations you have a contract accepted on your home and your home inspection is scheduled for today.      However, you are really not sure what happens at the home inspectin or what you should even do while there.    So here my top five tips for you to follow during your home inspection.

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  1. Ask Questions . . . this is your opportunity to find out as much information about the house.  If you don’t understand something ask the question.     One of my favorite questions to ask the inspector at the end of the inspection “Would you buy this  house?”
  2. If you have any concerns prior to the home inspection write them down and bring that list with you.
  3. Take notes.  Even though your inspector will give you a report with all of their notes it is best if you also take notes as he or she is talking.
  4. Follow the inspector around at all times.  Do not just sit in the living room and wait for the insepctor to finish.  You will miss important details and information by not following the insepctor around.
  5.  Ask the inspector to share with you home maintence tips as well as defects.   A good inspector will do both.
  6. Bring labels for your main water cut off, gas cut off, and hose bibs.  Some inspectors do this but bring your own just in case that they don’t.
  7. Focus on three types of repairs  1.  Large ticket items   2.  Safety concerns  3.  Small items that if not addressed will turn into a large ticket item.    Remember that a home inspection is not to address cosmetic items.       You want to make sure your home is safe and will not become more expensive than you were thinking because of expensive repairs.
  8. Bring a tape measure.   This is a great opportunity to measure rooms for furniture.
  9. Do NOT bring a family member that has not seen the home yet.   Have that family member come out to the home prior to the home inspection.  Remember you are going to spend 2-3 hours hearing everything that is wrong with the home.    If you bring a family member the first time to see the home at this moment they don’t ever have the opportunity to see how special the home is before they hear all the negatives.    I find that when this happens that family member pressures the buyer not to buy the home when there can be repair negotiations that can be a solution.
  10. Don’t make any decisions at the home inspection.  Get the full report, review it and then make a decision concerning repairs or moving forward at that time.

 

Valley Mede Homes for Sale

September 15th, 2014

Valley Mede is one of Howard Counties best kept secrets.     Located between Route 4o and Route 99 the community is tucked away but close to major commuter routes and local restaurants and stores.     Unlike many of the newer communities in Howard County homes in Valley Mede are on half acre lots with wide streets.    School aged children are zoned to attend St. John’s Lane Elementary School, Patapsco Middle School and Mt. Hebron High School.     If you have any questions about the community or any questions concerning these homes please contact The Laura Strunk Team today.

 

Click here to view property list.

Ellicott City Homes for Sale Under $400,000

August 8th, 2014

Ellicott City is located in the heart of Howard County Maryland and is consistently ranked as one of the best communities to live in with some of the best schools in the state.     It is centrally located between Baltimore and Washington DC.    The Median Income is $93,357.     Ellicott City has many parks, historic areas, shopping and green spaces.

Click here to view property grid.

 

 

Schools in Ellicott City Maryland

July 25th, 2014

Do Schools Matter???? Yes!  Here is a quick link to all the schools and the general information in Ellicott City.    Click here for additional School Information in Maryland.  Laura Strunk of The Laura Strunk Team was a middle school teacher for 11 years and give you valuable insight when buying a home in Maryland or selling a home in Maryland.

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[schoolsearch city=”Ellicott City” state=”MD” groupby=”gradelevel” output=”table”]