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Fall Checklist: Getting Your Home Ready for Winter

Getting Your Home Ready for WinterYour home is one of the biggest investments of your life, and it’s important to make time to protect and keep it safe for your family. As the seasons change there are things you can do now (in milder temperatures) to prepare and maintain your property for the colder winter months.

When the days begin to grow shorter and the calendar turns to October it’s a good time to prepare for the cold season ahead. It’s never too early to contemplate winterizing your home and Chorey & Associates Realty, Ltd. has provided a handy checklist to help you protect your Suffolk, VA, real estate.

  • Check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure indoor safety.
  • Have your chimney professionally cleaned (and repaired as needed).
  • Change filter and have your heat system serviced while the weather is still mild.
  • Clean gutters and downspouts after the leaves have fallen.
  • Check and adjust the drainage areas around your home to prevent excess water from making its way into the house.
  • Check your roof for loose, damaged, curled, and missing shingles. Repair as needed.
  • Seal your driveway and concrete surfaces to preserve them.
  • Repair and paint any exposed wood surfaces; check for areas of loose or cracked caulking.
  • Repair or replace leaky seals around windows and doors.
  • Drain outside faucets and sprinklers and put your hose away before freezing temps set in.
  • Prepare and properly store your mower and other outdoor lawn equipment for the winter.
  • If applicable, shut down your pool for the season. Cover and/or store all patio furniture.
  • Trim trees around your home to protect the structure and to prevent critters from using them as an entryway into your warm home during the cold months.

By using this handy checklist and your common sense, you will be well prepared for the winter to come. Be safe and be prepared!

First-Time Buyer Advice

An image of a couple walking towards a house.
If you’ve never purchased a house before, you may have no idea where to begin when preparing to become a homeowner. You may be on the fence about buying, or you may feel like you are ready to buy a home today. Either way, these tips can help anyone feel a little more prepared for their first home purchase!

MONEY IS KEY

It is easy to begin scrolling through beautiful homes on the market without considering your budget. Sale postings can be all over your social media feeds, tempting you to just take a peek. While looking can be fun and exciting, you should prepare financially before you start seriously eyeing any homes. It is much better to know what your price range is so you don’t fall in love with a house you just can’t afford (for now!)

MAKING A LIST, CHECKING IT TWICE

While you need to be realistic and recognize that you likely are not going to find a home with every single thing you wish to have in a house, making a list of the things that are a priority for you (room count, big backyard, master walk-in closet, etc.) will help you to make sure you’re only looking at houses that will fit your wants and needs.

PHOTOS DON’T TELL THE WHOLE PICTURE

It is easy to fall in love with a home after seeing the listing photos. These perfectly lit, well-staged photos show off houses in their best light, but that doesn’t mean you are getting the whole story. Listing photos are a great place to start, as they will help you to narrow down your options. Unfortunately, there are home traits that may not be portrayed well in photos, whether it be low ceilings, a drafty build, or anything in between.  Once you’ve made a short list of the homes that appear to be a fit for you, always do a home tour.

THAT GUT-FEELING

If you walk into a house and it feels like home, trust your gut. There is no better way to know if you should buy a home than seeing how you feel when you walk through the front door. Your home purchase will probably be one of, if not the largest, purchase you’ve made in your life so far. Pictures can only do so much, and nothing can help you decide whether or not a house is made for you better than getting inside it!

NOTHING ELSE WILL DO

Do you get upset at the thought of losing the house you just toured to someone else? Does it already feel like home when you are inside? These are two signs that you have found the home for you! If you see a home and are ready to stop looking at others, you are one step closer to buying a home you will love.

THE BEST AGENT

Finding a great real estate agent is going to be the part that ties everything together. A quality agent will help you find homes within your budget that possess your must-have items and they’ll offer you guidance through every step of the process. If you are ready to purchase a home in the Suffolk, VA or Isle of Wight, VA areas, call me today! (757) 650-3977. I know the area and will guide you through every step of the process!

An image of Ann Culley Crusenberry

Ann Culley Crusenberry, REALTOR®  (757) 650-3977

Ann@choreyrealty.net

Beautiful blue home

Selecting the Right Neighborhood for Your Home

Are you committed to a move this year? Whether you are making a local move within a familiar territory or planning to purchase a home in a new area, there are many things to consider to ensure that you choose the right neighborhood!  Fortunately, the selection process should not be too daunting, especially if you know what to look for in a community. Whether you have a large family or live by yourself, the area in which you live plays a huge role in determining your overall quality of life. With this in mind, consider the following factors when investigating local neighborhoods.

Is There Space?

Depending on the size you need your new home to be, your ideal neighborhood might not have a property with sufficient space. This is why it is a good idea to understand the size of the house you need AND determine your budget before searching for the right location. The last thing you want is to fall in love with a neighborhood, only to discover it cannot accommodate your needs or is out of your price range. Having a focus on your priorities can eliminate wasted time when you begin to visit potential properties.

Are there any Hidden Costs?

Many neighborhoods have Homeowners Association dues and regulations about how you maintain your property. Have you figured additional fees into your budget? Are you okay with HOA regulations? If not, move on! Another thing to note, (especially in our Suffolk, VA and Smithfield, VA areas) would be the regulations/considerations of purchasing a home within a historic district. Often, in historic areas, there are property regulations when it comes to renovations and repairs. Do your homework if you love old homes and are looking at properties with a designated historic district.

Is the Location Convenient?

When browsing through the Suffolk, VA and Smithfield, VA, homes for sale, it is essential to consider convenience, especially if you have a family. In addition to being within easy driving distance of schools and workplaces, the neighborhood you choose should be near grocery stores, restaurants, and other necessary facilities to your daily life. Do you have a commute within the Hampton Roads area? Consider the factors of tunnels, traffic, and tolls when you are looking to relocate within the area.

Little boy smiling outside of a new school

Finding a New School

When moving to a new location with your family, it can be stressful on your children, as the move will often involve them leaving friends and familiarity behind as they are introduced to a new school district and group of people. Though changing schools can be difficult, especially when you are new to an area, it doesn’t have to be overwhelming.

When moving to a new town, be sure to do your research on all schooling options in the area. If you are making a move to Suffolk or Isle of Wight County, VA, your Suffolk real estate agent will be able to help you determine the schools within range of your new home. Use the Resources page of our web site to browse links for public and private school options in our area. If you are moving to a new home in Suffolk, you’ll find a Suffolk Public Schools locator link on this page. Put in the address of your new home and you’ll see which Suffolk Public Schools are in that zone.

Once you have narrowed down your search, schedule a tour of the potential new schools to ensure they meet your expectations. Be sure to ask the staff any questions you have about their curriculum, policies, and atmosphere. You want your child to be in a safe and nurturing environment where they can learn and make new friends with ease.

Moving to a new school can be a challenge, but with a little help and patience, your child will adjust. If you are interested in learning more about the schools in the Suffolk area, contact Chorey & Associates Realty, Ltd. today at (757) 539-7451. We are here to help your family with every aspect of the moving process!

What to Do When Moving out of a Rental

After spending months browsing through the Suffolk, VA and Smithfield, VA, homes for sale, you finally landed the one you love. Not only are you preparing yourself financially for the move into your new home, but if you are currently renting, there are a variety of things you’ll need to take care of as you prepare to vacate your rental property. Listed below are some considerations that will help ensure you have a smooth transition out of your rental agreement.

Understand the Terms of Your Lease

Most property owners require their tenants to give notice prior to moving out of a rental. A typical amount of time is 30 days prior to the intended move date, but, review your lease agreement for terms specific to your situation and plan accordingly. If it is time to move before your lease is up, it is essential to understand the terms outlined for breaking the lease. Some property owners may be more lenient, while others want you to pay out the remaining rent. Your rental agreement should also have outlined what you are responsible for doing (repainting, carpet cleaning, repairs, etc.) to have your security deposit refunded in full when you move out.

Ensure You Receive Your Security Deposit

Receiving your security deposit back when it is time to move out could potentially be one of the most frustrating aspects of renting. Read the fine print of your lease to ensure everything listed in the terms for deposit is taken care of. Don’t wait until the last minute to repaint or have repairs completed.

Finishing Touches

Allow time for scheduling a packing and moving company. If you need the help of a few friends and family members to move, coordinate a time that everyone can be available to keep the process smooth. Don’t forget to schedule cutoff dates for your utilities in the rental property! Also, although it may seem more cost-effective to clean everything yourself, hiring a professional team could be beneficial in the end. Don’t overlook the power of a professional carpet cleaning as well, especially if you’ve had pets and children in your rental. Hiring reputable cleaning professionals will ensure the entire place is squeaky clean from top to bottom, putting the odds of receiving your full security deposit in your favor.

Helpful Tips for First-Time Homeowners

When you’re buying and moving into your first home, there are some things you should be aware of to help make the process a smooth one. The agents at Chorey & Associates Realty, Ltd. want to share some pearls of wisdom we have gathered through years of experience helping our clients. Check out some helpful tips below.

Don’t Commit Before You Are Ready

It’s never a good idea to rush into the commitment of owning a home unless you are ready. Be thorough in your search for the right property and do your homework! In addition to your mortgage payment, don’t forget to think about the cost of property taxes, homeowner’s insurance, HOA fees and other monthly costs of owning a home.  Homes for Sale in Northern Suffolk VA

Always Have an Inspection

Before signing the closing papers and officially becoming homeowners, you need to have your home inspected by a professional. You want to know the precise condition of the house you are buying which includes the pipes, foundation, roof, and everything else in between. A thorough inspection can save you a lot of money and potential frustration by exposing unexpected issues with the property that may need to be resolved before you make it official.

Don’t Wait to Pack

Don’t wait until the last minute to start packing. The average time it takes to pack belongings for a move is about three weeks. This timeframe gives you enough time to pack everything properly without being rushed, especially if you are moving to a new city or state. If you will be hiring a moving company, be sure to book early in order to be guaranteed the services you need on the date you prefer. By planning ahead, you can save yourself a great deal of headache in the long run.

If you’re a first-time home buyer, you can turn to our experienced team when you’re searching for homes for sale in Northern Suffolk, VA . We will show you options and provide you with insights to help you throughout the entire process. Call us right now at (757) 539-7451 to start your search. Our team is here for you!

How to Help Your Children Get Excited About Moving

As an adult, you understand the reason behind moving into a new home for various reasons such as a new job or the need for additional space. As a child, moving can be scary because of the unknown factors. Depending on your child’s age, he or she might not easily understand the reason for changes in their routine and living space. However, there are ways to help your child adjust to a move, and we have listed a few ideas below to help ease the transition for everyone in the family.Suffolk Real Estate

New Room

One way to help your child become excited about the move into a different home is to include them in the process of walking through the new house together and discussing how you will be setting up your new home! How would your child like to decorate his/her new room? Choosing paint colors and new décor can be a fun way to help ease the transition. What does your child see from his/her new bedroom windows? Help your child become familiar with the new surroundings by pointing out nearby interests (is there a neighborhood park or even a playset in the new backyard?) and be patient as they learn the “footprint” of the new home. The more familiar these new surroundings become, the less anxious your child will feel.

Make New Friends

If your family is moving to another school district or state, remind your children that this is an opportunity for new friends and new adventures. You can make a list of places to explore together in your new area! Check with the local library for books about moving that you can read with your children! Visit a restaurant, museum, public garden, or sports complex in the new location! It can be incredibly overwhelming for children to move away from the familiar, but a new house provides an opportunity to establish new family traditions and create your dream home of a lifetime.

If you’re still searching for a place to call home, you can turn to our knowledgeable real estate team. Give us a call at (757) 539-7451 if you are considering Suffolk real estate. We know Suffolk and the surrounding areas and WE GET RESULTS.

How to Narrow Down Your Search for a House

Once you have decided that buying a home is the ideal choice for you, there are many things to consider before you begin looking. To help you jumpstart your search, we have listed a few items below that you should think about beforehand to ensure you end up living in a home you love.Homes for Sale in Northern Suffolk VA

Location

Whether it is a particular neighborhood or a specific school district you want to be in for your children, picking the general location is vital to buying the right home. Our real estate agents know the area well, so we are able to help you locate homes for sale in Northern Suffolk, VA, Isle of Wight County, Southampton Country, Suffolk and the surrounding areas. We also have several agents who are licensed in North Carolina. For so many reasons, we are the Locals Choice!

Requirements

We recommend making a list of must-have items like a certain number of bedrooms or bathrooms, backyard, garage, upgraded kitchen, home office, and more. By seriously considering what you need to have in a home, you will be able to narrow down the best possible choices without wasting time looking at what you don’t need.

Style of Home

In addition to location, consider the style of home you want.  Whether you’re looking for a craftsman or colonial home, townhouse or farmhouse, we can help you find the type of home you are searching for.  We want you to love where you live and our experienced team is capable of making that happen!

Call us today at (757) 539-7451.

2019 is Your Year to Buy a Home

Ring in 2019 in the best way possible by becoming a homeowner! Discover below why you should purchase this year!Houses for Sale in Suffolk VA

Mark it off of Your New Year’s Resolutions

Have you been dreaming of purchasing a home for your family, but just didn’t have time to look in 2018? Now is the ideal time to turn this resolution into a reality. Whether you are searching for apartments, townhomes, condos, or houses for sale in Suffolk, VA, our dedicated real estate agents will help you narrow down your search to locate the ideal home for your needs.

Easier Than Ever

Our team understands that life can get hectic and things get put on the back burner, but buying a home is easier than ever in 2019! Our knowledgeable and experienced real estate team at Chorey & Associates Realty, Ltd. will help you throughout the process of property searching, negotiating, and finalizing details for your dream home. We are continuing our tradition of excellence with over 40+ years of business. Let us answer your questions and ease your buying process!

Don’t wait any longer to give our real estate office a call at (757) 539-7451, so you can mark off buying a home from your New Year’s resolutions list.

3 Advantages of Buying During the Winter

When you decide you’re ready to buy a home, you might be wondering which season is the ideal time to purchase a house. While the team at Chorey & Associates Realty, Ltd. can help you find a home for your family year round, there are benefits of buying a house in the winter:Smithfield VA Homes for Sale

Sellers Need to Move

If you’re looking to move into a home right away, you will like buying during the wintertime because most sellers who list homes during the winter are eager to sell and often more likely to negotiate.

Less Competition

If you find a home you love during warmer seasons, chances are there is another family that loves it too and has already put in an offer. When multiple parties are interested in the same house, it can drive the price way up. Not as many people want to move during the winter, which means you will have less competition to drive the prices up.

Better Prices

Typically, when a seller is listing a home in the winter, they need to move quickly and have it listed to sell. This puts you, as a buyer, in a great situation for prime pricing.

Dial (757) 539-7451 when you need a trusted real estate agent to show you Smithfield, VA, homes for sale today.