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Saturday, November 10, 2018

3 Things to Consider Before Listing Your Home as a Short-Term Rental


By Tim Harris
Welcome to the Age of Sharing. The sharing economy is a 21st century phenomenon that's expected to grow from $15 billion in 2014 to $335 billion by 2025. A recent COUNTRY Financial Security Index® revealed that over half of Americans (54 percent) are currently participating in the sharing economy, including using services such as home-sharing and maintenance platforms.
A home-sharing platform offers short-term, furnished lodging by the week or by the night, and can be a room, whole house or part of a house—an arrangement popularized by Airbnb. A long-term rental, on the other hand, is leased for a month or longer, with renters on the hook for utility bills and other expenses.
Short-term rentals are collectively referred to as "home-sharing," and with its potential to create big economic benefits for both individuals and cities, it's here to stay.
Airbnb and Your City
If you live in a city, such as Portland, Ore., and seek more financial security, the sharing economy could be good news. The city was listed as one of Airbnb's Most Hospitable Cities in the U.S. and, according to the index, Portlanders actively support sharing (62 percent use such services).
Airbnb also reported that hosts in Portland earned an average of $8,900 a year in 2015, while the typical host in Seattle earned $8,000 the year prior. Hosts in Los Angeles earned an average of $9,100 in 2017.
Homes.com recently compiled a list of the Best and Worst Cities for Making Money With Airbnb, if you're interested in seeing where your hometown fares. If you've already decided that you're ready to list your home on a short-term rental platform, keep these things in mind:
Know Your Regulations
Not all cities facing an increase in home-sharing see it as a win-win. Many municipalities are only now coming to terms with the economic impact of the trend, and, as a result, are passing new regulations that are often designed to curb its development.
Ask local agencies questions before signing up with Airbnb. Does your city have a framework for short-term rentals? Are there any legal restrictions? How expensive is licensing?
Continuing with Portland as an example, it was the first city in the country to recognize Airbnb and its economic potential. In 2014, Portland partnered with Airbnb to create the Shared City Initiative, which, among other things, implemented a short-term rental lodging tax—but everything didn't come up short-term roses for the Rose City. Many Airbnb hosts ignored the lodging tax and didn't bother to secure a permit. Recently, the City of Portland discovered that 80 percent of its Airbnb-style rentals were operating illegally.
In 2017, recognizing that they had a problem, the Portland City Council passed tougher short-term rental enforcement laws, creating fines of $1,000 - $5,000 per violation. The city means business. It recently collected $72,092.92 in fines and fees from an Airbnb operator who had been running six bedrooms when only two were allowed.
Rule No. 1 is to know and obey regulations, which may vary from city to city. Ignorance of the law is certainly no excuse, and avoiding it would be criminal.
Know Your Neighborhood
Cities are made up of distinct neighborhoods, and people are proud of where they live, so, you'll want to think carefully about the impact of a short-term rental on your neighbors and neighborhood before moving forward with your plans. For instance, ask if your short-term rental will affect the character of your neighborhood. Will your neighbors have to compete with guests for on-street parking? Will your neighbors feel less secure with strangers in their neighborhood?
You don't need to get your neighbors' permission before renting rooms to others, but as a courtesy, you'll want to let your neighbors in on your plans.
Also, you'll want to establish clear house rules and expectations, especially about noise or late-night outdoor socializing, for your guests. If your neighborhood has an HOA, make sure you remain in compliance. Rule No. 2 is to be a good neighbor.
Know Your Coverage
This is the scary part. In London, a short-term renter threw a party for 100 people, unbeknownst to the homeowner, during which floorboards were ripped and a television pulled off a wall. In another widely-reported example, again unbeknownst to the homeowner, a short-term rental unit was used as a pop-up brothel. The damage in that instance was so great that the homeowner wished the unruly guests had just burned down his house.
Stories about experiences as bad as these are extremely rare; however, they serve to remind us about the financial and legal risks for hosts who allow strangers into their home. It's important to make sure you have the appropriate coverage if you don't already have it.
Home-sharing companies such as Airbnb or HomeAway offer basic insurance coverage, but what they offer may not be enough, or could be severely limited by exclusions. The COUNTRY Financial survey found that nearly two in five Americans who offer a service though a sharing platforms don't think they'd be completely covered by their insurance in the event of an incident.
Your best option is to ask your insurance provider about the nature of the protection, liability coverage and deductible. For example, if you're renting out rooms at your primary residence, short-term, on a regular basis, it may be considered a home-based business, and you could be denied coverage. Rule No. 3 is to protect yourself and your guests through the appropriate insurance coverage.
Share in the Future
Opening up your home to the sharing economy can generate extra income to help pay your mortgage, finance a planned remodel, take a much-delayed vacation or even set aside more funds for retirement. Ready to take the plunge? Here are a few final suggestions:
When creating a budget, remember to add in other costs, such as maintenance and taxes. You may be able to mitigate risk by interviewing potential guests before giving them access to your home. Also, consider requiring guests to have their own homeowner's or renter's policy.
Don't forget to first create a financial plan to help you make the most of your new earnings. You might find that your home is where the money is, and there's no place like home-sharing.




Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Friday, November 9, 2018

The Best and Worst States for Senior Retirement Finances


By Lori Thomas
Retirement is a massive goal for many seniors and a big milestone in every retiree’s life. The average person spends decades saving for retirement and planning for this major financial decision. However, while most seniors envision retirement being completely stress-free, there are many financial hurdles to accomplish and multiple factors that can impact retirement finances, as well.
Did you know that among all of these factors, where you live can actually have the biggest impact on your retirement finances? There are certain states that are amazing for retirement finances, while other states have obstacles that make them less than ideal for retirees.
So, how do you tell which states accommodate the comfort and needs of retired seniors the most? Fortunately, SeniorAdvice.com has a data-driven algorithm called their SeniorScore tool, which they've used to rank both the best and worst states for retirement. Want to see where your state ranks? Or are you simply looking for some ideas for a great new state to consider for your upcoming retirement? Here’s a breakdown of the best and the worst retirement states:
The Best States for Retirement Finances
  1. Wyoming. If you're looking for a calm, peaceful place to spend your retirement, consider Wyoming. The state boasts plenty of lush nature, which retirees often enjoy, and plenty of adult daycare and nursing home services. Plus, in Wyoming, these service costs are lower than the national average. You'll also enjoy significantly lower property, state income and sales; however, that doesn’t mean that income is lower in Wyoming. In fact, the average household income is higher than the national average.
  2. Virginia. Virginia residents can also enjoy low property and sales tax, while the average household income is significantly above the national average. Virginia residents enjoy affordable assisted living, nursing home and home healthcare costs, as well. What really makes this state special is that it isn’t just a great place to retire financially, but it also ranks high when it comes to quality-of-life for seniors. This may be why there's such a large senior population there.
  3. South Dakota. If finances are the key to you enjoying your retirement, then South Dakota is for you. This state has low income and sales tax, paired with a low unemployment rate and an average cost of living. Another great perk for seniors? Nursing home and adult daycare costs in South Dakota are much lower than they are in other states.
The Worst States for Retirement Finances
  1. California. Although many retirees would love for California to be on the list of best states to retire in financially, the state is unfortunately on our list of "worst" states. Despite the great climate, California isn’t a great place for seniors to retire. Property and sales taxes are higher, while the state income tax is much higher than the average for the rest of the country. Cost of living is extremely high, as are assisted living and adult daycare costs. All of these things can really add up and make California a difficult state to retire in.
  2. Rhode Island. This small state has some big financial hurdles for seniors, making it a difficult place for seniors to retire in. Property and sales taxes are higher than the national average, while Rhode Island struggles with a very high overall cost of living. As for assisted living and nursing home costs? They're both significantly higher than the national average. Perhaps this is why there's an extremely low percentage of seniors who currently live in Rhode Island.
  3. New York. There are many hurdles that can make retiring in New York difficult. This state not only ranked low on the SeniorScore tool scale due to health and safety, but low marks for finance and recreation make it a less than desirable state to retire in. Also, New York has high property and state income taxes. Don’t forget about property taxes, which are more than double the national average. For seniors looking for assisted living, nursing home, or adult daycare, these services are very expensive, as well.
Remember, your retirement journey is a very personal one, and where you choose to retire is completely up to you and your vision for your perfect retirement. However, the more you know about the financial climate in the state you currently reside or are looking to retire in, the better prepared you'll be for this major life change.




Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Avalon and Stone Harbor NJ Weekly Update November 8th, 2018 #RealEstate #NJ

WIN A FULL SET of Stone Harbor Beach Tags!  The Stone Harbor Museum is raffling off a full set of Stone Harbor beach tags, including the rare 1971 tag, the very first year tags were required.  The set of 47 tags is mounted and framed, ready for display.  Recent tags typically sell for a nominal sum, while early tags command a huge premium, and assembling a complete set is exceptionally difficult.  Proceeds from the raffle will help the museum cover expenses.  To purchase a $10 raffle ticket, contact the museum at 609-368-7500 before they sell out.  The winning ticket will be drawn during the Stone Harbor Christmas Parade Thanksgiving Weekend.

MORE GAS MAINS will be installed in Avalon this winter, as older mains are replaced.  50,000 feet of new mains will be installed, mostly in the north end of the borough.  Homeowners will be notified as work progresses and lateral connections are made.  Work is to be completed (including patched streets) prior to the 2019 summer season, with final paving to occur in the fall.


Boats fill the slips at Commodore Bay Marina in Avalon.

AVALON ACHIEVES AAA BOND RATING:  Once again Avalon has achieved a AAA bond rating from Standard & Poors, having maintained that rating for over a decade.  The S&P rating was based on Avalon’s strong liquidity, institutional framework, and available fund balance.  The AAA rating helps save taxpayers money when the borough borrows for capital projects.

MORE BALD EAGLES have been spotted along the Delaware Bay according to an Atlantic City Press article as well as areas of Atlantic County.  Some were spotted behind Seven Mile Island last week.  Bald eagles have rebounded in recent years with 178 nesting pairs counted in 2017.

THE CAPE MAY MONARCH MONITORING PROJECT reported increased numbers of monarchs at the end of October, after more modest counts earlier.  This year’s counts have still been down compared to last year, though prevailing winds during the migration season may have diverted monarchs further west than usual.  For an article on the monarch count, click here:  https://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/news/breaking/cape-may-monarch-numbers-solid-this-year-but-lower-than/article_2d867382-cee5-55d2-b237-24eeff2ac7d3.html

UPCOMING EVENTS:
  • Yoga at the Zoo, $20 suggested donation goes directly to the care and feeding of the animals, Cape May County Zoo, meet at the zoo entrance at 8:45AM, Saturday, November 10
  • Avalon Home & Land Owners Association Monthly Meeting featuring guest speaker Scott Wahl, Boro Business Administrator, Avalon Senior Center, 10-11:30AM, Saturday, November 10
  • Art Workshop: Decoupage Holiday Shells, register at 609-967-7155, Avalon Free Public Library, 1-3PM, Saturday, November 10
  • Big Band Dance featuring Tony DeLuca, Avalon Community Hall, 7PM, Saturday, November 10
  • American Legion Post #331 Veterans’ Day Ceremony, Veterans Plaza in Avalon, 11AM, Sunday, November 11
  • Stone Harbor’s American Legion Veterans’ Day Ceremony, 11617-2nd Avenue, Noon, Sunday, November 11
  • Drop In Tech Workshop for Apple computers, iPads & iPhones, Avalon Free Public Library, 2PM, Friday, November 16
  • Sea Isle City’s Girls’ Weekend, 3 days of special offers at retailers, restaurants, salons & other businesses, Friday-Sunday, November 16-18
  • Creative Writing, feedback on poetry, memories, short stories, articles & books, register at 609-967-7155, Avalon Free Public Library, 10AM-Noon, Saturday, November 17
  • Avalon’s Festival of Trees, The Whitebrier at 260-20th Street, silent auction bidding on your favorite decorated wreathes & trees, 5PM on Wednesday, November 21 & Noon on Friday, November 23
  • Story & Craft Time with Mrs. Claus, Avalon Free Public Library, 10-10:45AM, Friday, November 23
  • Avalon’s Festive Friday, downtown Avalon, over 40 activities for the entire family, 11AM-6PM, Friday, November 23
  • Stone Harbor’s Island Holiday, pet parade, Merchant’s Hospitality Friday Night, Small Business Saturday, Scavenger Hunt & family activities, Friday & Saturday, November 23 & 24
  • Photos with Santa, Stone Harbor Fire Company, 5-7PM, Friday, November 23
  • Holiday Gift Guide Presentation, suggestions for best tech ideas to hottest toys, Avalon Free Public Library, 10-11AM, Saturday, November 24
  • Avalon’s Snowfest Saturday, downtown Avalon, holiday carnival with family fun, photos with Santa, rides & entertainment 11AM-4PM, Saturday, November 24
  • Stone Harbor’s Annual Christmas Parade, music, entertainment, floats, fire trucks, the arrival of Santa, downtown shopping district, 6:30PM, Saturday, November 24
  • Stone Harbor’s Caroling & Tree Lighting,  caroling throughout town on a trolley & then lighting of the Christmas tree in front of Boro Hall, 4:45-7PM, Wednesday, December 5

Featured Property:

This magnificent oceanfront home has views up and down Stone Harbor’s beach—and $267,000 in gross rental income!



1 108th Street, Stone Harbor, $6,495,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 183535


New Listings:

2110 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $750,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184777

3465 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $854,500, ACTIVE MLS#: 184780

162 83rd St. Beach, Stone Harbor, $1,800,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184823

756 21st Street, Avalon, $2,395,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184779

10 97th Street, Stone Harbor, $2,900,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184798

65 W 11th Street, Avalon, $3,195,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184840


Properties Under Contract:

663 21st Street, Avalon, $699,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 184740

246 28th Street, Avalon, $999,900, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 184351

1125 Stone Harbor Boulevard, Stone Harbor Manor, $999,999, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 182527

148 21st Street, Avalon, $1,549,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 180793

1248 Avalon Avenue, Avalon, $1,589,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 184020

36 W. 26th Street, Avalon, $1,595,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 183979

211 118 Street, Stone Harbor, $1,899,500, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 184562

9415 Sunset Drive, Stone Harbor, $2,095,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 183632

33 W. 25th Street, Avalon, $2,695,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 183866



Properties Sold:

667 22nd Street, Avalon, $460,000, SOLD MLS#: 182368

133 Meadowview Lane, Avalon Manor, $493,500, SOLD MLS#: 168183

8318 Sunset Drive, Stone Harbor, $775,000, SOLD MLS#: 182855

1668 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $865,000, SOLD MLS#: 182799

4138 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $975,000, SOLD MLS#: 183007

4351 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $1,150,000, SOLD MLS#: 183209

7428 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $1,200,000, SOLD MLS#: 184150

267 22nd Street, Avalon, $1,400,000, SOLD MLS#: 183655

298 46th Street, Avalon, $2,275,000, SOLD MLS#: 182629

1 97th Street, Stone Harbor, $5,162,500, SOLD MLS#: 180303









Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Saturday, November 3, 2018

First-Time Homebuyers: Unique, Sort Of


Buyers on their first go at homeownership are a product of their surroundings today—budgets burdened by college debt and mounting prices (and, now, rates), with the inability to save. With the barely-there headway in inventory, many are simply spinning their wheels.
"With the lower end of the housing market—smaller, moderately-priced homes—seeing the worst of the inventory shortage, first-time homebuyers who want to enter the market are having difficulty finding a home they can afford," says Lawrence Yun, chief economist at the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). "Homes were selling in a median of three weeks and multiple offers were a common occurrence, further pushing up home prices. These factors contributed to the low number of first-time buyers and the struggles of would-be buyers dreaming of joining the ranks of homeownership."
Against the challenges, however, first-timers are not all that different from other generations of homebuyers, according to the Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers from NAR, newly released for 2018. When compared to all buyers as a group, and homebuyers in a repeat scenario, first-time homebuyers are also:
  • Likely to accumulate a down payment through personal savings
  • Likely to enlist the help of a REALTOR®
  • Likely to house-hunt online
  • Likely to be married
  • Likely to purchase a single-family
Another common trait? Buyers, including first-timers, are encumbered by their loans. Thirteen percent of buyers are challenged the most by the down payment, and for half of them, college debt is keeping them from saving for it, according to the research. (Twenty-four percent of buyers have college debt—a median $28,000—and 40 percent of first-timers are weighed down by it, at a median $30,000.)
As for those who can amass enough for a down payment? Whether a first- or seven-time homebuyer, there's a similarity: cash to spare. According to the research, first-timers put down 7 percent this year, up from 5 percent, while repeats put 16 percent toward their purchase this year, up from 14 percent.

For more information, please visit www.nar.realtor.




Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Friday, November 2, 2018

Right Now Is the Time to Make Your Homeownership Dream Come True


The time has finally come. After what has seemed like an eternity for many potential homebuyers, the seller's market appears to be cooling off in many real estate markets across the country.
According to Zillow research, after several years of rising prices and competitive bidding, now is the perfect time to purchase a home, and the outlook only looks sweeter as we head into winter.
"The housing market always lets up a little in the fall, when kids are back in school and the home shopping season wraps up for the holidays," says Zillow Senior Economist Aaron Terrazas. "But this fall and winter are shaping up to be more favorable for those buyers who have struggled to get into the housing market for several years amid red-hot competition."
And Zillow has taken this information to the next step by compiling a list of the 10 best places for homebuyers this winter, based on these three metrics:
  • An increase in the share of listings with a price cut
  • Projected increase in rent appreciation over the next year
  • Affordability relative to the past
Some surprising cities make the list, including Seattle and Las Vegas, which were previously difficult markets for struggling prospective homebuyers in the past. Here are the 10 best places for buyers this winter, based on the metrics listed above:
  1. Orlando
  1. Boston
  1. Seattle
  1. Las Vegas  
  1. Charlotte  
  1. Columbus
  1. Portland
  1. Sacramento 
  1. Minneapolis
  1. Dallas
To view a full breakdown of Zillow's research, click here.




Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Avalon and Stone Harbor NJ Weekly Update November 1st 2018 #RealEstate #NJ


THE EAGLES HAVE LANDED!  Not the Philadelphia Eagles…bald eagles!  This past week several bald eagles were spotted in the marsh behind Seven Mile Island.  Many have perched atop nests recently vacated by ospreys.  If you’re out on the water or driving the Boulevards keep an eye open for eagle sightings!



Treat yourself to a sunrise on the beach the next time you’re in town—it’s a great way to start your day!  Photo by Brian Reed.



A 132-FOOT FISHING PIER could be built on Sea Isle City’s bayfront according to plans unveiled at a recent city council meeting.  The pier would be constructed at Dealy Field near 60th Street, and would include space for fishing, a kayak launch area, and an area for sitting and enjoying the view and sunset.   The city has applied for a county grant to fund the $935,000 pier, and permits from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection must also be obtained.

WINTERIZE NOW!  It’s that time again, as temperatures will soon drop after this week’s pleasant warm up.  Outside showers, garden hoses, and other outdoor water should be shut off and drained, and foundation vents can be closed.  If leaving your inside water on, set thermostats at 55 degrees to keep pipes warm.   Call your plumber or contractor now, if you haven’t already, and get on their schedule.  Need a plumber or contractor?  Call or email me!
              
SCENIC DRIVES YOU MUST TAKE:  Car & Driver magazine posted photos of beautiful drives in each of the 50 states.  Stone Harbor appears on the list (at #31) for a sunrise view over the Great Channel Bridge.  Check out that view (and the rest of them) right here:  https://www.caranddriver.com/flipbook/scenic-drives-every-state#31

LOOKING TO TRY A NEW RESTAURANT?  Check out Restaurant Weekend in Cape May, Thursday through Sunday, November 1st through 4th.  Participating restaurants will offer an appetizer, entrĂ©e, and dessert for $35 per person.  For a list of restaurants visit www.cmrestaurantweek.com  A little bit further north, Somers Point Restaurant Week takes place Friday through Sunday, November  2nd through 11th.  Eighteen restaurants will offer prix fixe menus, with two-course lunches for $12.18 and three-course dinners for $27.18.   Check www.SomersPtRestaurantWk.com for participating restaurants.

DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME ends Sunday, November 4th.  Turn those clocks back an hour!  Good news—in just a couple of months the days will start getting longer again!

$295,000 & UP:  No matter what your budget, there’s something for you on Seven Mile Island!  The new listings hitting the market this week include several under $1 million, plus a getaway condo for $295,000.  Look below and check them out—or call me to discuss your needs and let me find the perfect place for you!  

UPCOMING EVENTS:
  • Ghoul Spring Village Event, Historic Cold Spring Village, 7-10PM, Friday & Saturday, November 2 & 3
  • Lecture & Slide Show on Lost Cape May County chronicling hotels, churches, train stations, etc. that no longer stand led by architectural historian Joan Berkey, Avalon History Center, 1-2PM, Saturday, November 3
  • Carry on The Songs of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young Concert, Harbor Square Theater, doors open at 8:30PM, Saturday, November 3
  • Daylight Savings Ends, set your clocks back 1 hour, Sunday, November 4
  • Yoga at the Zoo, $20 suggested donation goes directly to the care and feeding of the animals, Cape May County Zoo, meet at the zoo entrance at 8:45AM, Saturday, November 10
  • Avalon Home & Land Owners Association Monthly Meeting featuring guest speaker Scott Wahl, Boro Business Administrator, Avalon Senior Center, 10-11:30AM, Saturday, November 10
  • Art Workshop: Decoupage Holiday Shells, register at 609-967-7155, Avalon Free Public Library, 1-3PM, Saturday, November 10
  • Big Band Dance featuring Tony DeLuca, Avalon Community Hall, 7PM, Saturday, November 10
  • American Legion Post #331 Veterans’ Day Ceremony, Veterans Plaza in Avalon, 11AM, Sunday, November 11
  • Stone Harbor’s American Legion Veterans’ Day Ceremony, 11617-2nd Avenue, Noon, Sunday, November 11
  • Creative Writing, feedback on poetry, memories, short stories, articles & books, register at 609-967-7155, Avalon Free Public Library, 10AM-Noon, Saturday, November 17
  • Avalon’s Festival of Trees, The Whitebrier at 260-20th Street, silent auction bid on your favorite decorated wreathes & trees, 5PM on Wednesday, November 21 & Noon on Friday, November 23
  • Stone Harbor’s Island Holiday, pet parade, Merchant’s Hospitality Friday Night, Small Business Saturday, Scavenger Hunt & family activities, Friday & Saturday, November 23 & 24
  • Avalon’s Festive Friday, downtown Avalon, over 40 activities for the entire family, 11AM-6PM, Friday, November 23
  • Avalon’s Snowfest Saturday, downtown Avalon, holiday carnival with family fun, photos with Santa, rides & entertainment 11AM-4PM, Saturday, November 24
  • Stone Harbor’s Annual Christmas Parade, music, entertainment, floats, fire trucks, the arrival of Santa, downtown shopping district, 6:30PM, Saturday, November 24
  • Stone Harbor’s Caroling & Tree Lighting,  caroling throughout town on a trolley & then lighting of the Christmas tree in front of Boro Hall, 4:45-7PM, Wednesday, December 5
 
Featured Property:

An easy walk to the beach, or to the shopping district,  with room for a large family to enjoy all that Avalon offers!



138 20th Street, Avalon, $2,300,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184506


New Listings:

7800 Dune Drive, Avalon, $295,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184684

700 First Avenue, Avalon, $619,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184722

351 96th Street, Stone Harbor, $639,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184751

1114 Stone Harbor Boulevard, Stone Harbor Manor, $649,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184732

663 21st Street, Avalon, $699,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184740

6732 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $925,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184715

7704 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $1,299,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184726

138 30th Street, Avalon, $1,495,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184748

272 90th Street, Stone Harbor, $2,195,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184704

218 121st Street, Stone Harbor, $2,595,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184731

102 102nd Street, Stone Harbor, $2,995,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184727

254 6th Street, Avalon, $2,995,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184744

4369 Dune Drive, Avalon, $4,995,000, ACTIVE MLS#: 184669


Properties Under Contract:

301 80th Street, Avalon, $695,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 184229

125 Meadowview Lane, Avalon Manor, $1,499,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 184130

140 105th Street, Stone Harbor, $2,399,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 183440

43 Flamingo Drive, Avalon, $4,195,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 184437

83 E. 14th Street, Avalon, $4,199,000, UNDER CONTRACT MLS#: 184544



Properties Sold:

7929 Dune Drive, Avalon, $340,000, SOLD MLS#: 183584

4028 Ocean Drive, Avalon, $566,000, SOLD MLS#: 183516

468 Avalon Boulevard, Avalon Manor, $690,000, SOLD MLS#: 181614

245 34th Street, Avalon, $800,000, SOLD MLS#: 182567

214 27th Street, East Side, Avalon, $859,900, SOLD MLS#: 183969

125 78th Street, Avalon, $2,800,000, SOLD MLS#: 181560

65 W. 24th Street, Avalon, $3,750,000, SOLD MLS#: 180440







Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Enter to Win! Housecall’s Halloween Costume Contest


It's that time of year again! To celebrate Halloween we want to reward our loyal readers with the chance to win a $100 Visa gift card! Every day, over the next 11 days, you can enter to win.
Simply like us on Facebook and share a photo of yourself in your Halloween costume on the RISMedia or Housecall Facebook pages and you'll be entered to win! We’ll be posting about the contest every day through November 1, so you can post your photo right in the comments section of one of our posts! That's it! A winner will be chosen at random the day after the contest ends (on November 2).
Entries will be accepted from Monday, October 22, 2018 through Thursday, November 1, 2018. RIS Reader Rewards equal to one (1) $100 Visa gift card will be awarded to one (1) randomly selected participant entering on RISMedia’s or Housecall's Facebook page. To view Official Rules and our Privacy Policy/Terms & Conditions, click here.





Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Monday, October 29, 2018

4 Things NOT to Do When Putting Your Home on the Market


Editor's Note: This post was originally published on December 29, 2016. Housecall continues to share this piece due to ongoing requests and reader interest.
So you've decided to put your home on the market. Congratulations! Hopefully, you've brought a rockin' REALTOR® on board to help you list your spot, and together you've done your due diligence on what to ask for. As you start checking things off your to-do list, it's also important to pay mind of what not to do. Below are a handful of things to get you started.
Don't over-improve.
As you ready your home for sale, you may realize you will get a great return on your investment if you make a couple of changes. Updating the appliances or replacing that cracked cabinet in the bathroom are all great ideas. However, it's important not to over-improve, or make improvements that are hyper-specific to your tastes. For example, not everyone wants a pimped out finished basement equipped with a wet bar and lifted stage for their rock and roll buds to jam out on. (Okay, everyone should want that.) What if your buyers are family oriented and want a basement space for their kids to play in? That rock-and-roll room may look to them like a huge project to un-do. Make any needed fixes to your space, but don't go above and beyond—you may lose money doing so.
Don't over-decorate.
Over-decorating is just as bad as over-improving. You may love the look of lace and lavender, but your potential buyer may enter your home and cringe. When prepping for sale, neutralize your decorating scheme so it's more universally palatable.
Don't hang around.
Your agent calls to let you know they will be bringing buyers by this afternoon. Great! You rally your whole family, Fluffy the dog included, to be waiting at the door with fresh baked cookies and big smiles. Right? Wrong. Buyers want to imagine themselves in your space, not be confronted by you in your space. Trust, it's awkward for them to go about judging your home while you stand in the corner smiling like a maniac. Get out of the house, take the kids with you, and if you can't leave for whatever reason, at least go sit in the backyard. (On the other hand, if you're buying a home and not selling, then making it personal is the way to go, especially when writing your offer letter. Pull those heart strings!)
Don't take things personally.
Real estate is a business, but buying and selling homes is very, very emotional. However, when selling your homes, try your very best not to take things personally. When a buyer lowballs you or says they will need to replace your prized 1970s vintage shag carpet with something “more modern,” try not to raise your hackles.





Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Home Haunted? It’s Not Completely Off the Table for Buyers


It's that spooky time of year again, and while ghouls and ghosts are typically reserved for Halloween night, there's a segment of the population that has haunting experiences year-round. Is this a concern for homebuyers? According to realtor.com®'s new Haunted Real Estate Report, which surveyed 1,067 people across the U.S., haunted homes are not completely off the table, but there are added stipulations.
What's enough to make them forget about the property's sinister reputation? For a third of respondents, all of whom would take a chance on a haunted house, a price reduction (15 percent), or a larger kitchen or better neighborhood (9 percent), could be incentive enough. Meanwhile, 18 percent of surveyed individuals are brave souls, claiming the haunted nature of the home wouldn't impact their purchasing decision.
"In a competitive market, it's harder for prospective buyers to be extremely selective," says Danielle Hale, chief economist for realtor.com. "If a house is commensurately priced, or has desirable features, the fact that it may be haunted seems to matter less. This report shows that, for those looking for a good deal, a lower price, better neighborhood or larger kitchen can balance out a few spooky happenings."
Of course, there are homebuyers who want nothing to do with a haunted home. In fact, 49 percent of respondents said there's no price low enough or kitchen large enough to make the eerie purchase worth it. Of these respondents, baby boomers (61 percent) said they'd never buy a haunted home, compared to their millennial and Gen X counterparts (41 percent).
How many claim to have lived in a haunted house? As many as two in five people, according to the report. Of this group, 32 percent are male while 20 percent are female, and 39 percent are millennials. When is the haunting occurring? Forty-four percent of respondents suspected or were completely aware of the haunting before they moved in, hearing strange noises (54 percent), experiencing strange feelings in certain rooms (45 percent) or noticing erratic pet behavior (34 percent).
Of those selling a property with unexplainable phenomena, 34 percent would willingly reveal the information to the public, while 27 percent would only divulge it if asked. Meanwhile, 22 percent wouldn't say a thing, and 17 percent would give out some but not all details.
home haunted
For more information, visit www.realtor.com.






Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com

Friday, October 26, 2018

5 Surprising Things You Can Negotiate Into Your Home Price When Selling


By Abigail Sawyer
When you're ready to list your home on the real estate market, you conduct a thorough inspection and fix any problem areas. You make your house look shiny and new by replacing broken items, upgrading light fixtures, floors, cabinets and window treatments, cleaning every inch and staging your home perfectly for your open houses.
But aside from listing the typical selling points like square footage, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, landscaping features and proximity to excellent schools, you can also list extra features to potentially boost the price.
Here are five things around your home that you can leverage to increase its value:
Window Treatments
When you move into your new abode, you're not going to be taking your window treatments with you. But while you're in your current home, it's worth setting aside a few hundred dollars to replace the blinds, shutters and curtains. If you have older aluminum blinds or unattractive curtains, swap them with modern-looking roman or roller shades, or even faux wood shutters and blinds.
For a truly modern, convenient touch, install motorized shades that can be opened and closed with the touch of a button. When you're selling your home, you can include these updated window treatments in your price.
Appliances
Appliances can be tough to move, especially if they're built into your kitchen or laundry room. Instead of planning to take them with you, include them in the price of your home. A word of caution: Be sure the appliances match, are (relatively) new and look immaculate. If you're in a pricey neighborhood, buyers want move-in ready homes stocked with higher-end appliances. Spring for expensive brands, and you may be able to get more money for your home when you sell.
Furniture
Some buyers are looking for a truly turnkey home that's completely furnished, especially in fast-moving cities like Los Angeles and New York City. The furniture they see staged at your open house will help them achieve that, and they'll likely be willing to pay extra for it. By selling your furniture and decor with your house, you may be able to mark up your home listing by 30 percent.
Light Fixtures
Light fixtures are usually customized for a space, so it's better to leave them in your house. To successfully sell them with your home, go for modern fixtures that keep the space well lit. Avoid harsh fluorescent lights and choose LED bulbs instead, which can make a room look brighter while saving energy and heat at the same time. You can put in accent lighting to show off your home's focal points. Add vanity lighting to the bathrooms and install path lighting along your outdoor areas for more light.
Playsets
Many potential buyers have kids or plan on having kids, especially if they're first-time homebuyers. Even if your own kids have outgrown the swing sets and play areas, consider keeping them in the yard. They have the potential to increase the price of your home and make it a more attractive option for your buyers.
Before you put your house on the market, be sure to consider these five aspects of your home. You may be able to boost the sale price by looking at these different features and leveraging them to your benefit.





Nancy M. Alexander - Stone Harbor and Avalon NJ Real Estate NancyAlexander.com