Videos that highlight important things for buyers & sellers

Home buyers would do well to learn how to spot drainage issues. Water is not your friend; if it's not controlled it will bite in a number of different ways and every one will hurt. The first and most obvious tell is the position of the home; is it declined from the road? Gravity ensures that water takes the path of least resistance; will that be rushing down an expansive driveway that lets it blast into the house or garage? Will that be an area of yard that becomes a trench due to erosion?

Walk all areas of the yard to see where the water is coming from, where it goes and what damage it's doing and may have already done. Be aware of street drains; where do they lead, where do they dump the water? Remember; headwalls, culverts, swales and similar…

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File for the Georgia Homestead Tax Exemption

If you purchased a home in Georgia in 2023, be certain to apply for the Georgia Homestead Tax Exemption. This can significantly reduce property taxes, so even if you didn't buy in 2023, check with your county to ensure this is in place. Home owners need to follow these steps:

  1. Eligibility: You must own and occupy the property as your primary residence as of January 1st of the current year. Remember, the exemption doesn't apply to investment or vacation homes.

  2. Application Process: It's not automatic. You need to file for the exemption in the county where your property is located.

  3. Finding Information: For detailed instructions and requirements, click the image below. This will take…

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It's not usually if, it's when trouble with polybutylene pipes occurs. Polybutylene pipe (AKA PB, Poly, gray pipe) is a type of plastic plumbing pipe that waspoly pipe leaking commonly used in residential water supply systems from the late 1970s to the mid-1990s. Polybutylene pipe was popular due to its low cost and ease of installation. However, it eventually fell out of favor due to concerns about its long-term durability and potential for leaks and failures. The greater Atlanta area has a significant number of homes with poly pipes and

Polybutylene pipes are susceptible to premature degradation when exposed to certain water disinfectants, high chlorine levels, and other chemicals commonly found in water systems. This degradation leads to brittleness, cracking,…

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No investors is immune, every one has dealt with additional costs due to unexpected repairs in a flip home. Hours of research, project expenses and potential profit, getting contractors and permits lined up and trying to hold onto the wallet. Rookie investors make rookie mistakes; overpaying, underestimating repairs, poor project management, overestimating finished market value and a thousand other things. But even experienced flippers get surprised from time to time.

Here's an example. The residents of this town home ignored routine maintenance for years, it needed extensive renovation. Several neighbors mentioned the residents were hoarders and the prospect of the home being completely renovated was welcomed news.

The preliminary inspection…

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landscape swaleWater is not a home owner's friend, it is constantly looking for ways to cause trouble. But it's predictable, we know it flows downhill and that is the key to successful water control. The short clips below are a great example of proper surface water control. This builder, unlike most, did a great job in setting a predictable pattern to control surface water runoff. This is a big plus, most builders could not care less about things like this; get in and get out as fast as possible and when problems develop just say "the county approved it so...". Salute to this builder.

Swales Provide Surface Water Control

A swale is a shallow, gently sloping depression or channel in the landscape designed to collect and redirect surface water runoff. It is…

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As the spring market heats up, home buyers will examine all options. Many will consider new construction, often visiting the projects and sales reps or calling the information lines. Seemingly innocent inquiries which often result in them being unrepresented by a buyer’s agent if they move forward. Builders love unrepresented home buyers. Not using a buyer's agent when building a home is the single biggest mistake new home buyers make and it will result in problems over the build.

What is Procuring Cause

Every home buyer should work with an experienced buyer’s agent. The buyer agent fee is almost always paid by the seller, there is no reason to be unrepresented.

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) says procuring cause means the agent who…

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“Should I rent my home if it won't sell”? Well, that question has many layers. But that off the cuff declaration by an annoyed seller might be a bit dramatic and premature. For owners unsuccessful at selling, “I’ll rent it” seems to be a knee jerk response. Best to take a step back, breathe, and examine all of the mitigating circumstances that contributed to this situation. For owners, selling a home usually has a significant emotional component; it’s unavoidable. To home buyers, it is just another home. Motivations, objectives, and personal situations are different and before anything rash is done, slow down. Start with figuring out why the home didn't sell.

Why Didn’t My Home Sell?

Assuming the home is/was placed on the market, why didn’t it sell?…

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Appraisers and home inspectors are important parts of a real estate transaction, but they serve completely different purposes. There are significant differences between an appraisal and a home inspection, it’s best for every home buyer to become familiar with the purpose of each. In fact, some real estate agents would also benefit from a reminder about their respective roles.

What is a Real Estate Appraisal?

In brief (operative word), an appraisal is an estimate of the current market value of a home completed by an appraiser using set evaluation criteria. In most cases, if a home buyer is getting a mortgage, an appraisal will be completed. The appraiser represents the interests of the home buyer's lender. They do not represent either buyer or…

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The Atlanta area consistently ranks as one of the very top markets for home flippers. The term "flipping" has a ridiculously broad definition, it ranges from changing the locks and selling it to completely a full remodel and selling it. The TV shows can't fully develop all of the headaches; in 22 minutes they need to wrap things up with smiling faces. The internet parasites selling "secrets" on how to make millions are delighted selling nonsense and collecting a few hundred bucks from each "never to be millionaire". Flipping homes is exceptionally messy, difficult at every level and stressful beyond description. It will keep you up at night, make you gray before your time and likely cost you money and time.

What Does a Flip Home Look Like?

There is…

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Cancel culture invades real estate...The number of cancelled home contracts hit a two year high in June 2022. Nationally, 14.9% of transactions were terminated. The number in Atlanta was higher at 22%. The recent national highs were at the start of the pandemic, 17.6% in Mar '20 and 16.4% in Apr '20. At that time, everything was up in the air as the pandemic took the over the globe.

Atlanta is over the national average but well off the leaders at 17th of the sampled markets. Still, 22% of contracts terminating isn't a anything to ignore. Oddly, Newark NJ had a minuscule 2.6% termination rate. The number is up in Atlanta but let's have a look at why.

Why Contracts Terminate

There are many moving parts to a successful real estate transaction,…

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