Stone Ridge Properties Charitable Foundation

Fall Updates: Rising Interest Rates & Home Inventory

The combination of rising interest rates and low inventory is creating a high-urgency market, and quick action from potential home buyers. 

However, home sellers should take caution, over-valuing or raising the price of your home may have the opposite of the desired effect. Stone Ridge Properties owner Jennifer Germain reminds sellers “with the threat of rising interest rates a properly priced home will always sell.”

Owner Cathy Toomey agrees and adds, “I think the increase in inventory should allow buyers better choices while acknowledging that properties properly priced will still move quickly.”

If your home, or a home you have had your eye on has been sitting on the market for a while, usually that means the price should be reconsidered. “A home that’s priced correctly in Newburyport shouldn’t have any trouble selling, if your home isn’t getting much activity or any offers - you have to look at the price” says Stone Ridge Owner, Sean Perkins.

What else should home sellers and home buyers consider heading into Fall?

Potential home sellers:

  • Rising interest rates tends to ignite a sense of urgency in potential home buyers, as interest rates steadily increase, home buyers that were hesitating to buy may jump in with offers.
  • If your home isn’t selling quickly, speak to your REALTOR®. It is likely the price may need an adjustment.

Potential home buyers:

  • It may be in your best interest to act quickly because it is likely the rates will continue to increase through the end of the year and will unlikely return to the historic lows we have been seeing since 2014 (Forbes)
  • Remember there will always be highs and lows in this market, and if you wait for the initial rush of buyers to die down, home prices will level off as the interest rates continue to go up. 

Heard of Home Staging? Here is Why it Really Works

Time to sell? One way to highlight your home’s strengths is through home staging. Home staging is the process of preparing and presenting your home in the best possible manner to appeal to the widest possible audience.  

Staging your home has the potential to greatly decrease the amount of time it spends on the market by allowing buyers to visualize themselves in the property. Here are some reasons why home staging has proven effective.

  • Allow the buyers to envision themselves in the space by removing any excess items and personal belongings.  According to the NAR 2017 Profile of Home Staging, 77% of buyers’ agents said staging a home made it easier for a buyer to visualize the property as a future home (National Association of Realtors). Rather than seeing the memories your family made, they should be imagining creating memories of their own.  
  • Neutralizing the decor can be best done by decluttering, rearranging, and simplifying.  Painting the walls simple colors and having minimal decorations makes it easier for the buyer to envision their own belongings in the space.
  • Appearing move-in ready: in today’s market, potential buyers will be quick to negotiate, and needing repairs or replacements will only justify their argument.  Remember, home buyers want to throw their house warming party as soon as possible. 
  • Buyers want to invest in a property that has been well-maintained, simple fixes and touch ups will put them at ease.
  • Gain a competitive edge by landscaping, deep cleaning, and removing pets.
  • First impressions matter, put in that extra effort! An entrance can be made that much more welcoming with a simple walkway, some potted plants, and a freshly painted door.  

Check out these professionally staged photos of 5 Moseley in Newburyport when it was on the market earlier this year!

Home Staging

Home Staging

Use Technology to help you stage!

If home staging isn't an option for you, some apps and other programs can help home buyers visualize furniture in empty rooms. Stone Ridge Properties Agent Cheryl Grant says, "I used a program called Modsy that did a great job virtually filling my empty living room."

Modsy photos are below....

Home Staging

home staging

home staging

Getting REAL with your Real Estate Decisions

Browsing real estate online can be a great way to explore what is available in your area and get a sense of prices and home styles from the comfort of your couch.

However, when it comes to getting serious about your home search or sale, it is essential to work with a licensed REALTOR® to assess your home value and make a plan for your home sale, or visit listings.

Why is it best to find a professional local REALTOR® for your home sale or purchase?

  1. Knowledge and Expertise: You aren’t just buying a home, you are committing to a neighborhood and community. Our agents live, work, and raise families in the greater Newburyport area and will be an invaluable resource to you long after your transaction has closed.

  2. Personalized Guidance: You will never feel like a “number” or an “online profile” if you work with a trusted agent; you are a person with a family, values, and specific needs for your future home or for your home sale. You should meet with REALTORS® prior to your real estate transaction to make sure you are working with someone who is a great fit for you and for your family.

  3. Connection: Let’s face it; buying or selling a home is one of the most important decisions of your life and can be an emotional experience. We will help you work through finding a dream home that suits your budget or selling the home your kids grew up in with empathy and understanding.

Meet our agents and contact us today!

Stone Ridge Properties Meet our Agents

Walking the Walk: Stone Ridge Properties Charitable Foundation

Stone Ridge Properties, Charitable Foundation

Stone Ridge Properties is a locally-owned, leading real estate agency in Amesbury and Newburyport, but we stand for a lot more than just helping our clients to buy and sell real estate.

Community involvement and charitable giving are core values of Stone Ridge Properties. Both the agency’s owners and agents are deeply invested in local organizations and pride themselves on contributing both through volunteer efforts and financial giving.

Every time a Stone Ridge Properties Agent closes on a home, they have the opportunity to give a part of their earnings to the non-profit organization of their choice.  Stone Ridge Properties then matches the donation (up to $100.)

Stone Ridge Properties, Pettengill House, Charitable Foundation, Cathy Toomey

Where do we give?

Each of our agents has the opportunity to give. Here are what a few of our agents have told us about their efforts in the community.

Newburyport agent Jennifer Germain says, “I believe in giving back to the community that helped pay me through selling homes in the area. I am passionate about several local charities  but my top two are Our Neighbors Table which feeds our local people in need and The Pettengill House that assists the needy in so very many ways. For me it is a full cycle process, people have paid taxes on their homes for years to help support the community then I sell their house and am paid for my efforts. I believe part of those proceeds should go to the part of the public that is struggling to stay in the community.”

Erica Puorro chooses to support the Friends of the Amesbury Public Library through the Charitable Foundation and volunteering her time. She says, “I believe the library and its programming enriches all community members – children, teens and adults. Since the Library receives limited municipal funding for programs we have been focussing on fundraising efforts, membership and our used book shop sales.”

Nancy Purcell is an avid birdwatcher and supports Massachusetts Audubon, Joppa Flats through the Foundation and Lori Lacey volunteers weekly I volunteer at Our Neighbors Table in Amesbury weekly. She says, “It is an amazing resource for people who need a little help and a great group of people.”

Pentucket Education Fund, Sandy Berkenbush, Stone Ridge Properties, Charitable Foundation

Our owners are all very active in community service and philanthropic giving as well. Owner Cathy Toomey is passionate about giving back to the community and participates in numerous community projects and organizations. She has been a member (and past President) of the Amesbury Rotary Club and sits on the Board of Advisors for the Pettengill House. Owner Sandy Berkenbush is on the board of the Pentucket Education Foundation and has been an active fundraiser for Dana Farber since 1994 raising over $290,000 with her annual Cruise for a Cure event.

When you work with Stone Ridge Properties, not only will you be working with a licensed REALTOR, you will be partnering with an agency that walks the walk when it comes to “giving back.” We love where we live, and we know you do to.

 

If you would like to buy a home, sell a home, or learn more about our Charitable Foundation, stop by either of our offices!

 

 

The Value of Using a Buyer's Agent

Have you been spending your Sundays cruising through Open Houses in the area to see what your market looks like and how homes are being priced? Are you beginning to poke around online for property? You should consider doing some research into local real estate firms and agents as part of your home search preparation!

Purchasing a home is an extremely exciting event, but there is a lot to manage, and what should be a happy, life-changing process can quickly become a daunting one. Working with a trusted, licensed real estate professional as your buyer’s agent will help to guide you seamlessly through the process. Furthermore, you should work with a REALTOR®. What is the difference between a REALTOR®, and an agent?

From the National Association of Realtors website: Every agent is not a REALTOR®, but most are. If you're unsure, you can ask your agent if they're a licensed REALTOR®. REALTORS® are held to a higher ethical standard than licensed agents and must adhere to a Code of Ethics.

Another perk of having a buyer’s agent? You don’t pay anything! The home seller does. The guidance and partnership is free to you.

buyers agent, real estate, home buyer, home buying

When working with a buyer’s agent you are guaranteed:

  • A lawful transaction
  • Loyalty
  • Trustworthy Advice
  • Years of experience - especially with a team like Stone Ridge Properties who has been helping clients buy and sell property in the greater Newburyport area for nearly 30 years.
  • The best value for your time

If you do not work with an agent you risk:

  • Paying too much
  • Not offering enough and losing the chance to make a reasonable offer
  • Home Inspection Misses
  • Paperwork Nightmares
  • Potential Lawsuits
  • Deals falling apart with no warning or recourse

Paperwork and legalities surrounding real estate transactions can be overwhelming and confusing, never mind when third parties get involved during processes like home inspections and meetings with other real estate professionals and potential sellers. And let’s not forget the process of negotiation! You may decide you want to make an offer below asking price, or in some cases over the asking price - especially in a competitive market. After your home inspection, you may want to further negotiate reductions based on findings and you may even want physical items from within the home as part of your final deal. Working with an experienced buyer’s agent takes the stress out of the transaction and is an absolute must when purchasing a property.

Working with a buyer’s agent will keep your offers timely and competitive, your transactions smooth and legal, and provide you with the most up-to-date news and information about the current market.

Contact one of our licensed REALTOR®s today!

What is the value of home staging?

What is home staging and should I consider it for my home?

If you have ever toured a home that is completely empty, you know how difficult it can be to imagine what your furniture might look like in the rooms, or to estimate how large certain spaces really are. The emptiness can be confusing - conversely, too much clutter in spaces can also be overwhelming.

One way to solve this problem for real estate agents and clients is home staging. The goal of staging is to increase the appeal of the home to the highest number of potential buyers, in order to sell the property quickly and for a high value. There are many strategies for effectively staging your home depending on how much time and money you would like to invest.

Some home-staging strategies:

  • Removing clutter
  • Rearranging room layouts to be open and inviting
  • Moving excess furniture into storage
  • Changing lighting
  • Introducing plants and other inexpensive artwork or home accents
  • Styling shelving

Most Realtors agree that a well-staged home may increase the value of the home as well has help to sell it more quickly. Even staging one or two rooms can impact the marketability of a home.

Rooms that Realtors often recommend staging are:

  • Living Room
  • Kitchen
  • Master Bedroom
  • Dining Room
  • Bathroom

If you are interested in selling your home and learning more about if home-staging would be a good option for you, contact your Stone Ridge Properties Realtor.

Register and Reap the Benefits

Are you beginning your home search or thinking about listing your home? Maybe you are just curious about real estate transactions in your neighborhood?  Register now to receive daily emails with home listing and activity results for your area.

Register and Reap the Benefits:

  • Save Time: Register and save the details for your most common searches (price range, town, number of bedrooms, etc.). You’ll never have to search again.
  • Save Your Favorites: Find a property and save it to your profile. If anything changes (price, availability), we’ll email you. Automatically.
  • Be the First to Know: When a new listing matches your home search criteria, we will email you automatically, so you’ll be the first to know.
  • Get Local Knowledge: View and print maps of property locations.

Want to speak to a Real Estate professional about your home search? Contact us:

Newburyport Office

978-463-4322

1 Merrimac Street #2, Newburyport, MA 01950

Amesbury Office

978-388-0880

20 Market Street, Amesbury, MA 01913
 

Stay connected:

Website: www.stoneridgeproperties.com

Facebook: facebook.com/stoneridgeproperties

Twitter: @StoneRidgeRE

Instagram: stoneridgeproperties

You have moved into your new home! Now what?

Are you purchasing your first home this spring? Or are you weighing the pros and cons of being a homeowner? There is so much involved in preparing for the purchase of your home, both financially and logistically, that sometimes it is hard to think about what you will need once you actually set foot inside your new house. Once you have decided to purchase a home, these are some of the things you should plan to have in place by your move in date (or shortly thereafter!)

lawnmower, lawn care, landscaping, new home

  1. A list of all of your new utility providers and contact details - think electric, gas, oil and internet! Hopefully you have successfully changed over your utilities into your name and billing information before you moved - now be sure to keep the list of phone numbers in a safe, easily accessible place for when you need them.
  2. A trusted handyman - ask your real estate agent and your new neighbors who they call when they need a pipe fixed or a window replaced. Find a trustworthy, reasonably priced carpenter, plumber or electrician before you need them rather than scrambling once you have an issue.
  3. A little extra money - once you have paid your down payment and all associated closing fees, you should still have a sum of money saved for unexpected home maintenance. There can always be surprises when moving in, and if something should go wrong, or break in your first couple of months, your stress will be greatly reduced if you have money set aside for it.
  4. Lawn care equipment. Are you purchasing your first lawn? How exciting! Do you have a lawnmower? Think about what you will need to care for your lawn and garden during the spring and summer months.
  5. A grill and some patio furniture! This one is just for fun - but if you are moving from an apartment into your first home with a yard or deck, you will want to enjoy your new outdoor space the first chance you get.
  6. Flashlights, batteries and candles - Where is that fuse box? As you get settled into your new house, you will want to be prepared for your first storm or first blown fuse. Having a flashlight and candles and a few extra batteries will set you up for success.

new home, keys, front doorTalk your your agent about the purchase of your new home, and discuss the home’s history. Your real estate agent is a valuable resource in finding local businesses, contractors and other community information to help in your transition.

Congratulations on your new home!  

Want to discuss moving? Contact us today to start the process.

 

5 reasons to Choose a Stone Ridge Properties Realtor

Although winter is just beginning, it is never too early to start thinking about your real estate needs for the spring. At Stone Ridge Properties, we are committed to being your trusted resource every step of the way during your home buying or selling process. Real estate transactions can become complicated, and unexpected questions or issues often arise. You will want and need a professional Realtor by your side every step of the way navigating the process for you - and with over 25 years experience in the Greater Newburyport area, we are able to expertly assist our clients with every aspect of buying and selling property.
We understand that buying or selling a home may be one of the biggest transactions of your life.

Here are 5 reasons to choose an SRP agent for your real estate needs.

1. We are a dedicated team that believes in personal, professional relationships with our clients. We will be your trusted resource from the minute you choose us as your partner, long after the transaction is complete.

2. We know the communities on the north shore of Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire inside and out, which means we know the people you will need to navigate every aspect of selling your home or finding your dream home. From movers, to lawyers, to contractors for every small job - we are your resource to connecting you with local, tried and tested experts.

3. We will work hard for you and ago above and beyond your expectations of a real estate agent.

4. We are trusted, respected and as a team of top-producing Realtors, we are the dominant independent real estate agency serving the Greater Newburyport area.

5. The community has voted us the Best Bet of Newburyport in The Newburyport Daily News for 8 years in a row.

Contact us today to get started and experience the difference for yourself. Finding the right Realtor to guide you through the process is just as important as finding the right home!

Giving Back in the Greater Newburyport Area

We are thankful for so much - especially for being a part of such wonderful, vibrant communities in Amesbury and Newburyport. This time of year many of us think of how we can give back to our neighbors. Being a local, independent business allows us to actively participate in so much, and part of our passion as a small business is giving back to our community. We have been a long-time supporter of many non-profit organizations in greater the Newburyport area. You can read about our continued commitment to the mission and work of such organizations in the communities we serve, we created a formal corporate giving program, the Stone Ridge Properties Charitable Foundation.

If you would like to be involved in giving back locally this holiday season, consider lending a hand to these organizations that we are proud to support. Here are a few organizations from our Foundation that have specific needs right now.

Pettengill House

The mission of The Pettengill House, Inc. is to support and empower children and families by providing education,comprehensive case management and basic needs; and by coordinating community supports that contribute to individual and family stabilization, personal growth and development.

Pettengill House offers family services to families in Amesbury, Byfield, Groveland, Merrimac, Newbury, Newburyport, Rowley, Salisbury, South Hampton and West Newbury.

How to Help:

Here is a link to the specific items Pettengill House needs most this season - food, clothing and toiletries. They also have a winter coat drive going on now. Here is more information about volunteering, including hours they are looking for help and initiatives you can be involved in.

Our Neighbor’s Table

Do you know hunger affects 1 out of every 16 people living across the northeastern Essex County? Our Neighbor's Table is committed to establishing a community that provides for the whole person with nourishing food, kindness and dignity.  Our programs provide food assistance to individuals and families living in Amesbury, Boxford, Byfield, Georgetown, Groveland, Merrimac, Newbury, Newburyport, Rowley, Salisbury, South Hampton, and West Newbury.

How to Help:

Our Neighbor’s Table is looking for items for their pantry, volunteers, and donations leading up to the holidays. You can also find a wish list for specific items they are currently looking for on their website.

Upcoming Events:

Amesbury Educational Foundation is having their Autumn Evening of Giving Monday, November 7th at the Ale House. Raising funds of sufficient size to make a difference in our schools is a challenging task. We invite you to help us provide and promote continued excellence in education for Amesbury Public School children. Learn more.

Details:

Come dine, socialize and support Amesbury Public Schools at the 2016 Autumn Evening of Giving.

Date: Monday November 7, 2016

Time: 6:00-9:00 PM

Location: Ale House 33 Main Street Amesbury, MA