Posts Tagged ‘home improvements’

4 Mistakes that Will Kill Your Home Sale

Thursday, June 19, 2014 posted by tommi

thumbsuphousepeople    The home selling season is in full swing.  In most markets, this is the best year sellers have had in a long time.  Inventory is at record lows and prices have increased nicely from their lows.  If you want to sell your property, this year is an excellant time to do so. 

Please Avoid these 4 Costly Mistakes that will Turn Off Buyers and Kill Your Home Sale in its Tracks:

  1. We’ve Been Meaning to Fix That
  2. Please Ignore the Clutter
  3. Make an Offer.  We know the price is high.
  4. You can’t see photo’s of this home on the MLS or the internet

The list is pretty self explanatory, so we won’t waste your time with a lengthy discussion about pricing, odors or a messy house.  We will tell you that an MLS listing will greatly increase your showings, chances of an offer and perhaps, even a bidding war.

MLS listings can be viewed on all major websites including, Zillow, Trulia and every major real estate website in the US.  Millions and millions of buyers search these sites, daily.  If your property is not listed, they will never know your home is For Sale.

Thank you for visiting  We can list your property on the MLS and all major websites…and you can still sell it yourself.  Visit the website for details about how to get your property in front of the buyers, today!


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2 Secrets for Making Piles of Cash on Your Home Sale

Wednesday, September 11, 2013 posted by tommi

2013 buyers are looking to set up a new home on Day 1, without having to put in a lot of fixes or tear outs.  The flip side for this is buying at a premium price point.  Having a move in ready home over bragging rights on a great deal is now essential, as is free time for socializing instead of home improvement projects.

2013 buyers are scrolling through pictures of homes for sale on their Ipads, laptops and computers like never before.  They are searching for a home that catches their eye.  A listing on the MLS puts your property in front of millions of home shoppers every single day.  And, ALL Why6Percent  MLS listings are automatically listed on, Zillow, Trulia, Homestore and all the major real estate websites with up to 25 photo’s.  The MLS costs less than  a classified newspaper ad…and, no one is reading newspapers, anyway.

Get your home listed on the MLS today and pocked piles of CASH!!!   Why Pay 6 Percent?

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House Flipping is Back.

Monday, October 15, 2012 posted by tommi

                           The home flipper is back, after a 5 year hiatus.   Is it time to be scared?

This time around, it doesn’t appear that the 25% rise in flipping a house for quick profits is signaling a market top.   The 2012 flipper is a cash buyer…generally a middle man…who buys a home in disrepair and flips it to a cash investor looking for turnkey rental property.

A “flipped” house is one that is purchased and resold within 6 months.   The average time between purchase and resale is 106 days.  The average profit earned per flip was around $29,000, excluding unknowns such as carrying costs and rehab expenses.

All homes flipped this year averaged between 1000 and 2000 square feet…so, it doesn’t look like anyone is flipping those McMansions, yet.  Flipping is more popular in area’s with a lot of foreclosed properties available.

If you have a home to sell, visit to see all the marketing options available to average investors, builders and home owners.  You may be pleasantly surprised at the professional tools that are available to you.

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Paint Your Front Door to Boost Curb Appeal

Monday, June 11, 2012 posted by tommi

    One of the secrets of professional home flippers is nothing more than a coat of fresh, bright paint on the front door.   

   Knock, knock.  What’s the first thing a buyer sees?   The front door is the most important thing in selling a home that most homeowners overlook.    A welcoming new front door in sassy hues like red, green, tangerine or indigo blue can make a snazzy first impression on the pickiest homebuyers.

    Any do-it-yourselfer can repaint a front door in less than a hour…and, for less than $50….so no excuses.   No better return on your investment than paint, where it counts most.

Thank you for visiting   Our Flat Fee or Entry Only MLS listing places your property in front of millions of homeshoppers each and every day.  If you aren’t on the MLS or, you are selling yourself and your home short.

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Before and After Examples of Curb Appeal

Wednesday, May 23, 2012 posted by tommi

The term Curb Appeal was first used in conjunction with real estate in 1975.  And, in case you aren’t sure what curb appeal is…this house has it in spades.  It is welcoming, it is neat, clean, colorful and inviting…it makes me want to go inside and see what else is there.

Accoring to Webster…Curb Appeal is the visual attractiveness of a house, and its surrounding landscape, as seen from the street.  Why is Curb Appeal so talked about among real estate professionals?  Because it is crucial to selling homes.  Without it, the buyer has no motivation to see inside, so the seller misses all opportunity at a sale.  

For example of how simple it can be to improve your Curb Appeal…this house has good bones…but showings increased exponentially after the seller removed overgrown shrubs and tiled over an ugly cracked concrete walk and steps.

A coat of paint and landscape spruce up makes all the difference in the world.  

   Shutters can change everything.  The homeowner made these himself and the change in balance and curb appeal was instant.

Showings doubled after this seller removed overgrowth to show off a beautiful porch that anyone would love to have.

This home sold in 3 days after the owners painted the front door an attractive color and added a splash of color to the landscaping.

This spring has been the best home selling season in years.  If you aren’t getting the showings and activity you should be getting, step back and take an objective look at your home from the street.   If your home isn’t inviting, then change that immediately.  The need for Curb appeal is so univeral to us all, that Home buyers will even look inside homes that are slighltly overpriced, if they are attracted and drawn to them.  Don’t sell yourself short or blame a poor housing market if your doesn’t shine from the road.

Thank you for visiting   We marked 3 more homes SOLD today… best market we’ve seen in a while.  Make sure you have an MLS or listing…these programs will bring you buyers…all you have to do is get them in the door.

If you plan to buy a new American flag this Memorial Day…make sure it is Made in the USA.  Here is a company that makes all their flags here at home.  Check out Veterans Flag Depot.

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Switch Out Shiny Brass Fixtures and Wall Plates

Tuesday, April 24, 2012 posted by tommi

                                                                                                                                                         From switch plates to chandeliers…builder grade, shiny yellow hardware is OUT.

Home sellers should  replace it with satin, nickel or stainless fixtures for a contemporary look. Or, replace it with rubbed bronze or black for a more traditional decor.

This updating project is inexpensive, straighforward and perfect for any homeowner.  Buyers will notice!!

Thank you for visiting  The home selling season is here.  Get your home in front of millions of home buyers everyday with one of our turnkey marketing options.  

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How to do a Home Walk Through Before Closing

Tuesday, March 13, 2012 posted by tommi

Homebuyers are always so excited about the day of closing and the move into their new home, but one important step should be taken before the closing.   Buyers should walk thru the home and give it a careful inspection before heading down to the closing office.

  • Schedule a walk through two or three hours before closing,…but, 24 hours before the closing is ideal to allow time to fix anything that the seller missed.  Do not walk thru more than 48 hours before closing.    Ideally, the buyer needs to see the house empty and ready to move into.
  • If the home needed a lot of repairs, it may be a good idea to take your home inspector back for the walk thru.
  • Be prepared for your walk through.  Bring along the original inspection report and the seller’s property condition disclosure.  Verify that all repairs have been made as promised.
  • Turn everything off and on.  Check that all applicances, heating, air, pool equipment, lights, etc. are operating as they should be.
  • Check to make sure all electrical outlets are working properly.
  • After the buyer signs the closing papers, the seller has no further obligation to fix anything else.

A walk through before closing is a crucial step for home buyers and it protects sellers, too.  Although, you don’t want to lose a great home over a  missing $1.00 plug cover, you don’t want to buy a problem that was supposed to be fixed, either.   Check everything on your list and if you do uncover something expensive that isn’t fixed…call your settlement attorney.  They can escrow the money for the incompleted repair and closing can take place as scheduled.

Thank you for visiting  Did you know that you can list your property on the MLS and act as your own selling agent?  You can.  Visit our website for home selling solutions that you might not know about.

Smoke Detector Installed?  Don’t forget your walk through :)

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How to Stage Your Home for Mass Appeal

Wednesday, January 25, 2012 posted by tommi

    Close your eyes.  Picture multiple buyers, multiple offers and a bidding war.  Envision selling in days instead of months.  Feels pretty great being a real estate genius, doesn’t it?   So, how do you create “We’ve gotta have it!” and “We’ll offer more!”?   

In this Why Pay 6 Percent blog, we offer illusions, tips and tricks of the trade on the art of “Staging”.  We ask you to look with “new eyes” at your house.  Remember that your house is no longer “your home”…it is a product that is For Sale.   The challenge is objectivity.  The reward is mass appeal.  The genius is in knowing that real estate is a numbers game.  Better your odds by eliminating no one.  

If you are unsure of exactly what staging is, think new home builders.  Even though staging is a new concept to the resale home market, homebuilders have profited from staging for years.  Their model home parks take “picture yourself living here” to an art form.   They often sell entire subdivisions of homes, sight unseen, thanks to a few smartly decorated “model” homes.  

What can staging do for you?  Take a look at a couple of builders model homes.   You will quickly spot that everything is new, fresh and clean.  It smells good.  It’s light.  It’s bright.  The lawn makes you want to walk barefoot.  It’s very friendly.  It feels like home, maybe better than home.  Gottcha!  

When touring a model home, don’t focus on the furnishings, but how they are placed in  the room.  Notice the amount of light in the room and where it comes from.  Note what you don’t see…clutter, deer heads, dead plants.  All these little things you see, and don’t, create an illusion of warmth, openness and universal appeal that make buyers say “I could definitely live here”. 

You can also get practical ideas about staging on TV channels like HGTV and A&E.  Shows like “Designed to Sell” and “Sell This House” have great ideas and feature real homeowners.  Their websites,  and feature show highlights and special topics to discover at your convenience.  Great staging idea’s can also be found in home magazines and websites.  And, in case you are short on time, we’ve done a little research for you.    

InfoTip 1:  First Impressions are formed in 15 Seconds

A buyer called to see inside.  Congratulations, your marketing is working and your curb appeal, appealed.  What can you do to make a good first impression?

      Buy a new Welcome mat.  Avoid cutesy.  Go classic.

      Shine up the door knob and knocker

      Mood Music, softly please.  Avoid lyrics’, opt for soft jazz or classics.

      Open the windows and air the house out.  If outside noises are not a problem and the weather cooperates, leave a few windows open.

      Adjust the inside temperature to an ideal setting.

      Flower Power— Flowers are cheap, create ambiance, add personality and cheer. 

      Smells—Good, clean, subtle smells are good.  Overpowering, disinfectant smells are used to cover something up and may also trigger allergies.

      Add a nice guest book and pen to invite comments.  Add small photo book picturing your house during a beautiful season.

      Turn on the lights in each room.  Well lit rooms show well.

      Open the drapes and blinds, but don’t expose ugly views.

      Highlight good views by drawing the eye to them.

      Light a few groupings of candles in appropriate areas.  Avoid strong scents.

      Remove all items considered “real estate”, before showing.  A good rule of thumb is, if it is attached or would leave a mark when removed, it stays with the house.  Many buyers refuse to close, or worse, they call an attorney, when they discover the dining room chandelier they “bought” is missing, the roses bushes have been dug up or the basketball goal has been stolen.

InfoTip 2:  Making a Grand Entrance

      Area Rugs break up the expanse of a floor space and make rooms feel smaller.

      Entry closets should be cleaned out.  Hanging Coats should not touch each other.

      Remove coat stands.

      The entrance into all rooms should be free of obstacles.

 InfoTip 3:  Bigger is Better

Create illusion of big rooms that people can picture their stuff in.  Think Spare, not Bare.

      Traffic Flow—You should be able to walk through every room in your house without being impeded by furniture.

      Counter Intelligence—Clear off all horizontal surfaces in the entire house.  Store the designer blender.  Decorate with a rosemary topiary, not functional items.

      Bigger is better does not apply to furniture.  Store oversized pieces.

      Re-paint dark rooms in light, neutral colors.  White reflects light-black absorbs it.

      Mirror, Mirror on the Wall–Seinfeld fans know mirrors create the “illusion of space”, feelings that there is a “whole other room in there”.  Mirror magic is highly effective on birds, and home buyers… Mirrors also add light, elegance, enhance views, show off mantels and shrink long, narrow hallways.

      Small pieces of furniture like footstools, end tables and throw rugs shrink space.

      Dining Room or Home Office?  Multi-tasking décor is confusing at best and screams that you have a lack of space and storage.  Computers do not belong in the dining room, ironing boards do not belong in spare bedrooms.  Stage each room for its intended purpose.  

InfoTip 4:  Hidden Treasures

Everyone needs Storage.  Covered Parking. Garages.  Attics.  Basements.  They may not count as finished square footage, but for homebuyers they count a great deal.

      Clean and light these areas before showing your home. 

      Use a label or sign to mark hidden doors or areas buyers might miss.

      Empty garages look bigger.  Pack the bikes, lawn equipment and trash cans.

      Basements should be aired out and free of mold and mildew. 

      Plywood can be placed in attics to create large, walk-in storage area’s.

      Hide things in storage boxes that slide under the bed.

      Lubricate the garage door.

 InfoTip 5:  Outdoor living rooms

When looking for ways to grow your space.  Look outside. 

      Balconies, patios or porches are living area’s, if staged properly. 

      Tables and chairs near your grill create another dining area.

      A comfortable lounger and coffee table create a reading nook.

      Healthy, potted plants can stage a greenhouse effect.

      Freshly mowed, green lawns have universal appeal.

      Outdoor lighting and sprinkler systems set a mood of relaxation. 

InfoTip 6:  Stimulate Imagination.  Buy this house and dreams come true.    

      Romantic, candle light dinners happen every night in this house… set your dining room table with your finest tableware.  Add a center piece and the stage is set.

      Use the romance and coziness of your fireplace to your advantage.  Place a pair of wine glasses and a vase of flowers on the coffee table in front of the fire.

      Sex Appeal.  Set the mood in your bedroom with fresh, fluffy linens, decorative pillows, candles and soft lighting.  Remove all personal items from view. 

      Well Healed His & Hers.  In the closet, like clothing should be grouped together.  Designate His and Her areas with his pants & shirts in his area, her blouses and dresses in hers.  Allow for space between each hanger.  Shoes should disappear.  Shelves should not over flow. 

      Anything provocative could spoil the mood.  Play it safe with displayed books, magazines and religious items. 

      Private Parts…bedrooms and bathrooms are private areas that people feel uncomfortable exploring.  To lessen feelings of intrusion, hide all personal care products in a basket under the sink.  Your Jacuzzi tub is sexier without the used razors and waxing creams.  Stage your bath as a place of retreat and quiet pampering.  Freshly hung, fluffy towels, candles, a basket of unused bath products de-personalize and give a bathroom the feel of a luxury hotel. 

InfoTip 7:  Real Life Issues Builders Never Face 

      Pets.  We love our Pets so much, this topic is painful to discuss.  Unfortunately, when buyer’s see pets, they start looking for trouble.  They immediately sniff for evidence of accidents.  They scrutinize for chewing, stains and scratches.  They rarely venture into the yard for fear of what they will step in.  You can’t pack your pet, so what can you do?

F     Cat Fanciers- Change the litter and sweep up daily.  Vacuum for hair.  Pack the kitty condo and all the toys.  Pick up the food bowls.  Freshen up bedding.  Brush your cat daily, so shedding is minimized.

F     Man’s Best Friend- If you can take your dog with you or to the neighbors, during a showing, do so.  If Doggie Day Care is available in your town, perfect.   Dogs who feel their job is to guard the house must be confined or taken off the premises.  Aggressive or barking dogs are best kept elsewhere until the house sells. 

Pick up the toys inside and out.  Scoop the lawn, daily.  Repair holes, paths, bare spots and damaged fencing.  Clean the pen.  Paint scratches on the door.  Remove feeding dishes and water bowls.  Vacuum daily.  Groom the dog and keep him clean.  Freshen his bedding.  Make it up to him when this is over. 

      Small Children—Can a two year old make selling difficult?   

As small as they are, they sure have a lot of stuff.  Try packing toys while they nap.  When you unpack in your new house, they will think it is Christmas.  Store the big life-size golf carts and doll houses.  Pack up most books.  Neaten their closets.  Clean out diaper pails, daily.  Move obstacles out of the entry or middle of their room.  Clear off bathroom countertops and hide bath toys under the sink.  

      Teenagers.  Bribe if necessary.

Scary, but their private space is now on public display.  They should make their bed every day, especially on weekends.  Take down the beads and re-hang the door.  Roll up those super model posters.  Get the TV, DVD, Computer, X-Box and Video Games stored out of view.  The closet is clean.  Clothes are put away.  Hide the spider collection and the magazines.  Repaint those purple walls boring white.  If a buyer is looking at the house, get out of bed, even if it is only 10:00 a.m., or get off the phone, turn off your TV and get out of the house.  Take comfort– a trip to the mall usually buys their forgiveness. 

Staging is a hard thing to live with everyday.  Thankfully, if you do it right, you won’t doing it for long.  One of those Looky Lou’s will picture themselves lounging and entertaining in your house in no time.  They will at long last become a homeowner and you will be recognized as a true, real estate genius.

Thank you for visiting  Our turnkey marketing programs reach million of home buyers, from all over the world, each and every day.  We can help you sell and save money to!!


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Paul Choi, a long time supporter of the American worker and American dream, complied a list of Links for People who are interested in fighting the Chinese import tsumani. 

If you would like to Vote for Made in the USA products, please CLICK HERE.    If you want to express your outrage about the outsourcing of American jobs, CLICK HERE.  If you want to reach our politicians and news reporters and tell them what you t hink about the Companies who are shipping jobs overseas, CLICK HERE!!

Thank you for helping InfoTube Fight for American Jobs and Products!!!  Your Money is Your Vote…Spend it Wisely!

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InfoTube, The Hillman Group and China

Thursday, May 26, 2011 posted by tommi

I am very happy to report that the public outcry about outsourcing American products, specifically Infotube and Infobox, to China has been encouraging, enlightening, motivating and best of all…it may be working to save jobs and keep American made products on the shelves.

As a result of your emails, calls, petitions, Facebook posts, etc. some strange things have happened.  We have been contacted by a US Senator, offering his assistance.  We have been interviewed on radio news and talk shows and our story has shown up in print across the country.   And, we still have our fingers crossed that we might receive a call from Diane Sawyer and ABC news about our story and products. 

If you haven’t told Diane and ABC what your favorite American products are, click this LINK and do so, today!  Please don’t forget to mention InfoTube and InfoBox!   

Perhaps, the most surprising outcome, so far, has been our two discussions with senior management at The Hillman Group.  Surprising, because it is happening at all.  Surprising, again, because we are each sharing information and I feel that everyone is sincere about wanting to reach a resolution. 

Rest assured that we won’t give up the fight until we hear that Crow Erickson will continue to sell Infotubes and InfoBoxes to our major d-i-y retail customers, like we have done for nearly two decades.

Sadly, during our meeting yesterday, Hillman management confirmed  that they have shipped some of the Chinese copycat product…identifible by its Yellow lid…to Home Depot, Lowes and Menards.   The retailers, in turn, hung it up in the sign department where the InfoTube and InfoBox used to proudly hang.  

Please ask for InfoTube and InfoBox by name at the store!!  Simply, refuse to purchase the Chinese Yellow Lid product.  You know what is at stake and your money is counted as your vote. 

A concerned consumer may have said it best in their reply to an email they received from the Hillman Group. 

“See, we American voters may truly be powerless, but we American consumers are not.  We are fed up watching big corporations, like yours, screw American businesses, and so if you think this lame email has calmed me, you are wrong.  I am just getting started.”  Cynn Chadwick

If you have a problem finding our products in the stores, you can purchase through our secure our website or through one of our valued, loyal internet vendors….many of whom took action on our behalf…even though by doing so, they face more sales competition.

Thank you again for your support, your comments and your encouragement.  If this little company can find a way to beat the competition over in communist China…then, so can other companies!  

Buy American and Support your Homeland!!!  We aren’t anti-chinese…we are just Pro-American!

Tommi Crow

President, Crow Erickson Inc.  1854A Hendersonville Rd #221 – Asheville, NC  28803.  1-800-858-6000

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