How Holiday Decor Will Impact Your Home Listing

How Holiday Decor Will Impact Your Home Listing

Is it a good idea to pull out the holiday decorations if you are trying to sell your home?Is it a good idea to pull out the holiday decorations if you are trying to sell your home?

Simple Steps to Transform Your Property into a Summer Dream Home

Simple Steps to Transform Your Property into a Summer Dream Home


The school year is winding down, which means that it is almost time to enjoy the summer months with your family! Are you ready to make it a memorable summer by planning fun activities with your kids? Right now is a great time to prepare your home so that you have the perfect property for a fun summer season.

Here are a few simple steps that you can follow before the kids get out of school:

Plan Family Activities

There is no doubt that you will be spending time at the lake, playing at the park, or enjoying a ball game. But, you also need to be ready for fun activities at home with the family as well. When you invite the neighbors over for a BBQ, are you ready to host?

Spending quality time outside is a great way to enjoy the weather. Prepare for these activities by cleaning out the shed or garage and taking inventory of the sports equipment is available. Pump up the football and the bike tires, fire up the grill, and consider investing in new shelves and containers to keep your sports equipment organized.

Cool Off on the Hot Summer Days

Do you have a backyard pool? Then make sure that you are current with the maintenance of the pumps and cleaners. If you don’t have a built-in pool, then consider getting a wading pool for the kids or a larger above-ground pool for the entire family.

These home upgrades can be as simple as setting up a store-bought pool and filling it with water. Or, you can invest in a built-in pool with water slides, waterfall features, and a diving board.

Even something as simple as a quick run through the sprinklers can be a great activity for the kids. Make sure that mom has a sunbed to relax and sunbathe while the kids are splashing around.

Backyard Relaxation

There is nothing better than kicking your feet up on the porch to relax after the kids have gone to bed. When you have a cold drink in hand and comfortable patio furniture, you can enjoy the evening with friends in the comfort of your backyard. Consider installing a gazebo to beautify the yard and create a natural gathering area.

Also, think about other details that will make the yard more comfortable. For example, you might use a mosquito net or hang up mosquito-repelling lamps. There are also tiki torches that can be used to improve the appearance of the yard and keep the bugs away at the same time.

If you are looking for a dream home with the perfect backyard, then DUFFY Realty is here to help! We know that the summer months should be focused on fun activities with the kids, and having the right home is essential for your family culture. We will help you find the perfect arrangements to meet the needs of your family: (678) 318-1700

How to Clear the Clutter in Your Home Office

How to Clear the Clutter in Your Home Office

Whether you are preparing to sell your home or you are looking for solutions to improve your current living conditions, it is essential that you consider the quality of your home office. As a busy, working parent it can be easy to let your office fall to the backburner because you are spending your time having fun with the family. As a result, your desk might be piled high with papers, and you could be dealing with clutter around the room.

A messy office can negatively impact your productivity when you are working. Additionally, a cluttered office can set the wrong impression if you are showing the property to potential buyers. Before you take photos for your real estate listing, it is essential that you take action to clean up the mess and prepare your home to sell.

Here are a few tips to help you clean up your home office:

Visualize What You Want to Create

How would you like the office to look when you are done with the decluttering? Cleaning up your office could involve more than just filing the excess paperwork. Consider making it a fun project by adding new accessories to the room or updating the furniture.

Holding this picture in your mind can help you to find the motivation that is needed to get the job done right. You might print out an inspirational photo that you find on Pinterest or a home office website to use as inspiration.

Set a Schedule

How long have you had the intention to clean up your home office? A good intention isn’t going to matter if you aren’t willing to put in the work and set a deadline. Decide on a day that you want to finish the cleaning. Make sure that you set aside time in your busy schedule so that you can successfully meet your goal.

Get Rid of Tabletop Clutter

You can’t throw away everything in the room, but you can create an organized system for storage. Invest in high-quality storage containers that will hold these items. Choose decorated containers to add a pop of color and improve the visual décor of the room.

When it comes to visual clutter, the biggest offenders are often papers on the desk or files that are overstuffed. If you can, try to keep the paperwork behind closed doors to create a calming effect in the room. Don’t just stuff the papers away… make sure that you sort through the paperwork so that you can shred anything that is no longer needed.

Create a System

A one-time cleanup can quickly be unraveled if you go back to your old habits. So, make sure that you put a system in place to stay ahead of the paperwork each day. Then, decide on a regular time every week to handle the paperwork and stay ahead of the mess.

Here at DUFFY Realty, we can share other tips to help you prepare your home for the real estate market. If you are ready to sell, then we invite you to contact us to learn more: (678) 318-1700

Moving to Georgia from another State? Here are a Few Tips to Help with the Transition

Moving to Georgia from another State? Here are a Few Tips to Help with the Transition

Whether you are changing jobs or looking for a nice place to retire, you will love the options that are available if you choose to come to Georgia. The Southern cookin’ and warm weather provide a great location for people of all ages.

It’s always a big task to move out of state! Not only do you need to care for the individual concerns of each family member, but you also need to make sure that you have a comfortable home to settle into. The best solution is to buy a home as soon as possible so that you can help your family settle down without the uncertainty of not knowing where you are ultimately going to live.

Here are a few tips to help with the transition to your new home in Atlanta or any other area in the beautiful state of Georgia:

Tip #1: Find a Great Buyer’s Agent

If you aren’t familiar with the area, it makes good sense that you should hire someone who has a thorough understanding of the real estate market. Finding a buyer’s agent should be the first step when you are looking to buy a home for you and your family.

Your agent will be a valuable resource to help you learn more about the neighborhoods, commute times, and other amenities that are available in the area. To work with the best agent in the Atlanta area, make sure to contact us at DUFFY Realty as soon as you find out you are moving here. We’ll roll out the red carpet to welcome you here.

Tip #2: Set a Budget

Take an assessment of your finances to determine how much you can spend on your new home. It is a good idea to go through the mortgage pre-approval process so that you have specific numbers to work with. These details can help you narrow down the homes to those within your desired price range.

In addition to the cost of the mortgage, you might also consider other costs such as HOA fees, property taxes, insurance costs, commute expenses, and other related expenses of owning a home in the area. Evaluate all of the expenses that you will be paying to ensure that your new home will fit into your family budget.

Tip #3: Research the Area

It is sometimes difficult to become familiar with an area in the short term, especially if you haven’t been there before. When you are visiting a potential area that you may be interested in, look for the patterns of the area and the demographics that you observe in the neighborhood. Other factors to consider include freeway access, traffic levels, the proximity of schools, and crime rates.

Talk to your real estate agent about your goals for the neighborhood where you want to live. Also, consider doing some online searches to find information about the neighborhoods that you are considering.

Here at DUFFY Realty, we will make it as easy as possible for you to move to Georgia! If you are preparing to move to the area, we invite you to contact the leading real estate team in Atlanta. We are here to help: (678) 318-1700

Wanted: Florida Tax Haven – What it Takes for a Second Home to Qualify as a Primary Residence

Wanted: Florida Tax Haven - What it Takes for a Second Home to Qualify as a Primary Residence

Do you love the idea of spending time with your family in the warmer climates during the winter season? As the cold weather rolls in, we pull out our sweaters and winter clothing. But, many people are grumbling about the cool weather because it’s harder to spend time with the family outside.

If you enjoy having your primary residence in the Atlanta area, but you would like a second home in a warm climate like Florida, then right now is a good time to talk to a real estate expert. Before you jump into the purchase, it is important that you understand the financial implications so that you can minimize tax burden as much as possible.

Primary Residence, Second Home, or Investment Property?

When you are buying a home, the best scenario is for the home to be labeled as “owner occupied” so that you can take advantage of the tax benefits. Lenders look at these properties in different ways, so they will go through a list of requirements to determine if it is a primary residence, second home, or investment property.

For a primary residence, you can get better interest rates and tax benefits compared to a second home. In this situation, the owner needs to live on the property for most of the year, have the home in a location that makes sense for their employment location, and the owner needs to acknowledge that they plan to occupy the property within 30 days after closing.

In comparison, a second home is a reasonable distance away from the primary residence, and the home needs to be occupied for a portion of the year. With an investment property, the owner doesn’t occupy the space.

Making the Second Home Your Primary Residence

If you want to buy a second home and make it your primary residence, then you need to consider a few options for your first home. You might consider renting out the property or finding someone to occupy the home so that you can move into the new home.

To have your second home quality as a primary residence, you need to establish residency in the state where the home is located. Work on tasks such as setting up utility bills, bank statements, changing your driver’s license and submitting voter registration paperwork. Additionally, it is necessary for you to occupy the home for at least 730 days in a five year period. Those days don’t have to be continuous, but the overall occupied time needs to add up to 24 months.

When you are ready to learn more about buying a second home and using it as a primary residence, then you should talk to our experienced team at DUFFY Realty. We are here to help you find the right property for your family: (678) 318-1700

To Remodel or Not To Remodel? When Contemplating Selling, That is the Question!

To Remodel or Not To Remodel? When Contemplating Selling, That is the Question!

To remodel or not to remodel… that is the question! If you are getting ready to sell your home, then it is likely that you are asking the same question posted by many other homeowners: should I remodel my home before listing it on the real estate market?

The answer to this question isn’t black-and-white. Instead, there are several factors that need to be considered to determine the right approach for selling your home. Here are a few things to think about:

Timeframe to Sell Your Home

Are you on a tight timeframe to move into a new home? The timeline might be restricted if you have already accepted a new job in a different location or if you want to get settled in before starting the next semester of school.

Renovations will slow down the process of renovating your home. So, if you are in a hurry to sell, then you might skip some of the bigger renovations so that you can quickly get the property on the real estate market.

Increase in Property Value

How much will your property value increase if you choose to remodel before selling? The offers that come in will be directly impacted by the quality of the home. If a property looks old and run down, then it is likely that potential buyers will come in with lower offers. They will see that a lot of time, money, and effort will need to go into improving the property before moving in. These factors can drive down the value of the property.

On the other hand, a few simple tasks can go a long way to set a better impression when someone walks through the door. A fresh coat of paint and new flooring can make a difference to help potential buyers feel comfortable when they are viewing your property.

Return on Your Investment

If you spend money on these remodeling projects, will you be able to get a return on your investment? There are situations where a homeowner can invest money for renovations and then profit even more from the higher selling price of the home.

The only way to measure the potential ROI of these renovations is by looking at other similar homes in the area. Talk with your real estate agent to make a cost comparison so that you can learn more about the price points of other properties in the neighborhood. You might find that a few thousand dollars of home renovations will increase the property value by more than what you invest in the property.

At DUFFY Realty our goal is to help you quickly sell your home and maximize your equity at the same time. If you are getting ready to put your home on the real estate market, then we invite you to contact us as soon as possible for more information. We can make some recommendations about the renovations that should be done before you sell your home: (678) 318-1700

Is it the Right Time to Sell Your Home and Move Your Family?

Is it the Right Time to Sell Your Home and Move Your Family?

It can be a difficult decision to sell your home and move your family to a new location. How do you know if the timing is right? As a parent, you are probably feeling the burden of providing the best experience for your children, so it makes sense that you are looking at the quality of your home and how it is impacting your child’s experiences.

These are a few factors that you should consider to help you decide if you should move your family to a new home:

Comfort and Space at Home

Do you feel cramped and uncomfortable in your home? If you don’t have enough space, then it is possible that the home is having a negative impact on your family’s attitudes. It is fun to spend time together, but people also need a little bit of personal time to enjoy family time more fully.

As your children get older, consider the benefits of allowing them to have their own bedrooms so that they can be independent and learn how to manage themselves. It is common for children to share bedrooms when they are young, but it is important that they have their own space as they get older.

Also, walk through every room in your home to determine if the property is too cramped. If you feel like everything is tightly fit into your home, then it might be a great time to upgrade to a bigger property.

Hosting and Parties

If you enjoy inviting family and friends over for holidays and backyard events, then you need to make sure that you have the right property to host the party. Look at the backyard, kitchen, and gathering areas in your home. By having the right home, you can ensure that everyone will have a good experience when they show up for the gathering.

In addition to the gathering areas in the home, also consider where the guests will sleep if they will be staying the night. For example, it is fun to invite extended family to enjoy the holidays in your home. But, everyone will be happier if your mother-in-law has her own bedroom so that she isn’t sleeping in a public room or intruding on the bedroom of one of your children.

Schools and Social Activities

Another important consideration is the quality of education that your children are receiving. Sometimes, moving might be right to help your children gain better access to high-quality public schools and the right circle of friends. Location is everything because it will impact the experience that your children have as they grow up.

When you are ready to find a dream home for your family, we invite you to contact our experienced team here at DUFFY Realty. We are always focused on the satisfaction of our customers, and we want to help you during this time of transition. Contact us today to learn more about the advantages of buying a new home: (678) 318-1700

A Historical Perspective: Will the FED Telegraph Rate Increases at their Next Meetings?

A Historical Perspective: Will the FED Telegraph Rate Increases at their Next Meetings?

Do you feel like you are holding your breath until the next FED meetings? Many people are interested to see if the FED will telegraph rate increases, which can have a domino effect on the real estate market prices and the economy of our nation.

At DUFFY Realty, we keep our ears open to new information about anything that might impact your future home purchase. Our team is always working to stay updated on interest rate changes because we know that these things can make it harder or easier to get the financing needed to buy a home.

Anticipated Changes to Interest Rates

At this point, it is anticipated that the Federal Reserve will forego an increase in the interest rate. These decisions are usually based on the economy, because they know that a rate increase might slow down spending nationwide. At the same time, it is important to keep your mind open since there is a possibility that rates will increase at some point or another.

If you want to avoid rate increases in the future, then right now might be the best time to lock in your mortgage on a new home purchase. Historically, the rates have been low for a while, which means that they will start moving up eventually to balance out supply and demand.

Telegraphing Upcoming Changes

What does it mean that the Federal Reserve will “telegraph” future plans? In the past, the financial markets have responded poorly to surprises. If something happens unexpectedly, then the markets have suffered.

The FED doesn’t want to cause waves in the financial markets, so they send out a “telegraph” which is a message notifying everyone of upcoming rate increases. Then, when the higher rates go into effect, they won’t cause big disturbances in the markets.

Interest Rate Changes during Presidential Elections

Historically, the FED doesn’t raise interest rates during a presidential election. This time can be a bit tumultuous as the nation is preparing for the upcoming vote. So, the current political climate will help to maintain rates at a lower level. But, it is possible that we might start seeing some changes early next year after the new president moves into the Oval Office.

The markets have been spooked since the big drops that happened earlier this year. Since the U.S. economic data is weaker than it has been in the past, the Federal Reserve will stay proactive to manage the rates in a way that won’t disrupt the lives of average people like you and me.

At DUFFY Realty we know that your family finances might be impacted by future interest rate changes. If you want to maximize your buying power, then we can help you find a home before the interest rates change in the future. Contact our team to learn more about our effective home buying process: (678) 318-1700

Can a National Election Affect Your Local Home Value?

Can a National Election Have an Effect on Your Local Home Value?

With the recent presidential debate, there has been a lot of conversation around the topic of the upcoming election. People on all sides of the political spectrum are wondering how the election will play out later this year. One of the biggest questions that comes up is how the new presidential election will impact the economy and the financial well-being of individuals and families.

Is it possible that the election could have an impact on the value of your home? It is a possibility since the election impacts the economy, which in turn has a domino effect on the real estate market.

Why A Presidential Election Impacts Real Estate

When it is time for a new president to step into office, many people are unsure about the way the markets will respond. In fact, it is common for spending to go down before the election because people are focused on saving their money instead of spending. Typically, the spending patterns will increase after the election is over.

As the economy changes, the real estate market changes as well. It is a simple principle of supply and demand. When home buyers are conservative with their financial decisions, it might slow down sales in the market.

Fluctuations in the Real Estate Market

There are normal fluctuations in the real estate market, and these changes are influenced by worldwide news, economic trends, and other financial markers that influence the financial health of the country. As long as our nation’s financial health is staying strong, then your house will likely maintain value for many years to come.

Even if there are small changes in the economy that impact the value of real estate, it is anticipated that the prices will bounce back within a few years. So, there is nothing to be worried about for the future.

Preparing to Sell Your Home

If you are thinking about selling your home, then the best thing that you can do is list it on the real estate market right away. Get ahead of the changes in the economy by selling your home before the election happens. At DUFFY Realty, we know what it takes to sell a home fast. We can quickly close the real estate deal so that you are settled into your new home before the new president moves into the White House.

Taking a proactive approach can be beneficial to minimize the impact that your family feels if the economy changes. You can be settled into your new home and enjoy the comforts of your dream home despite the economic changes that happen in our nation.

Here at DUFFY Realty, we make it easy for you to sell your home in any economic climate. Contact us right away for more information about the real estate services that are available for your family: (678) 318-1700

Why You Should Do Your Own Inspection before Hiring an Inspector

Why You Should Do Your Own Inspection before Hiring an Inspector

Hiring an inspector is an essential step before buying or selling a home. If you are a homeowner, and you are getting ready to sell, then there are a few things that you need to do before the inspector shows up. Maximizing the equity in the property means that you will be able to create a better home life for your family. These steps can give your family a smoother transition to your new home.

Here are a few things you should be looking for before the inspector shows up:

Cleaning: Inside and Outside

A clean home will leave a good first impression for the inspector. When the property is clean and tidy, it helps the inspector to see that you are a responsible homeowner. On the other hand, signs of neglect can have a negative impact on the first impressions. Outside, you should clean up the gutters, trim the trees, pull weeds, pick up items in the yard, and wash the windows. Inside, make sure to scrub the bathrooms and kitchen, clean the floors, organize the closets, and address any small home repairs that need to be handled.

Easy Accessibility

The inspector will need to access every part of the house, so make sure that you adjust the furniture to open the space if needed. Are there any objects blocking hallways, attic access, or the furnace? Walk through each room in the house and look for anything that might be in the way.

Pets are another factor that can impact the accessibility of your home. Before the inspector arrives, make sure that any animals are placed in cages. Better yet, take the animal on a walk or ask the neighbor to watch the animal for a few hours. If a pet is running around the house, then it can be a distraction to the inspector.

Prepare Appliances and Light Bulbs

During the inspection, all of the major appliances in the home will be checked. The inspector will be looking to see if these appliances are in working order. Check the stove to make sure there aren’t any pots and pans inside. Finish the laundry and remove clothing from the washer and dryer. Provide easy access to the water heater and HVAC system so that the inspector can see that these things are in good working order.

Also, it is a good idea to replace any light bulbs that might be burned out. The inspector needs to check the functionality of all light fixtures. New light bulbs will help the inspector to see that the wiring is in good condition.

Are you interested in learning more tips to make it a smooth transition when you sell your home? Talk with the experts to learn trade secrets in the industry! Here at DUFFY Realty, we know the best way to help you quickly and efficiently sell your home. Call us today for more details about our proven system: (678) 318-1700