What’s my house worth?

You may have just started considering the idea of selling or you have been wanting to take this step for a long time.  One of the first things you want to know: how much is my house is worth?  As licensed real estate professionals and investors we want to help property owners in Kansas City with as much practical information as possible.  Whether you sell your property directly to us or we help match you with the right buyer, we can help you with honest information.  Enter your address below and get an idea of what the fair market evaluation would be for your house.  Please keep in mind, this does not include any updating or repairs currently needed on your house.

https://hollyjackson.exprealty.com/sellembed.php

Don’t let a bank ruin your house.

Observing the flooding from hurricanes leaves everyone with a sickening feeling.  We understand the rising waters will ruin homes and require replacing most if not all of their belongings.  There is a shared sadness felt across the country, especially when considering many homeowners are not insured to cover the damages to their properties.  Thankfully there is an abundance of effort to help those in need and some government support which can be offered during natural disasters.

At EcoLiving Property, we see another kind of disaster and it affects families and houses just the same.  According to Realty Trac there are over 600,000 homes in some stage of foreclosure in the United States today.  There are so many reasons good, hard-working Americans begin struggling to make their mortgage payments.  Unfortunately job loss, medical problems, separations and so many other problems can become the financial constraint.

During the foreclosure process a bank will not be patient with a borrower on a human level, they don’t care to understand what the circumstances are.  Banks rely on a set of rules and numbers, they eventually will evict homeowners no matter how much equity they may have in the house.

What follows is the “natural disaster” to the house.  A once loved home can sit vacant for months or even years before it is processed by the bank to either resell or put onto an auction.  Over time all the regular upkeep a homeowner would do goes undone and begins to eat away at a house.  Wood rot sets in, sediment develops in pipes, termites can go undetected and moisture grows to mold.  A vacant house can even draw vandalism and lower property values in the whole neighborhood.  The longer it sits, the more damage is done.

Below are photos of a home we recently viewed.  It is a split level family home in a cul-de-sac in a nicely kept suburban area.  It was clear the property had sat vacant for too long and will likely stay on the market for much longer.  In this case, like many others, the bank wants a certain price and won’t take any less.  It is lower than retail price but can’t be financed through a traditional loan due to needed repairs, eliminating most retail buyers.  And the cost of the necessary repairs makes the bank’s asking price too high for investors.  Unfortunately houses like this will sit and deteriorate further.

As residential redevelopers and real estate agents we see a lot of houses in horrendous conditions.  It’s always a curiosity to wonder if there was something we could have done to help, if we could have been of assistance to the homeowner during a difficult time?

We buy houses quickly with cash and can help prevent the damage a foreclosure can do to credit.  Buying houses this way even prevents the damage a bank will cause by allowing a house to sit vacant following a foreclosure.  If you or someone you know is struggling with making mortgage payments, don’t worry you’re not alone.  We want to help you and lessen the impact of the disaster in your life.

stopforeclosure

Lessons in the Real Estate Market

The first house we bought this year took longer than expected to rehab. We overcame obstacle after obstacle like long distance trail runners, clawing and scratching our way to making things right.  It was important to us to complete this project with integrity and ensure it was solid, safe and beautiful inside and out.  We went above and beyond to improve the comfort and functionality of the house, even if it meant costing us more money in the end.  We ensured permits were used so the house would be properly inspected and we called in trustworthy sub-contractors to complete their own specialties. Throughout the project we stayed mindful of measures to improve the efficiency and re-purpose materials to be as environmentally friendly as possible.  I am proud to say we achieved what we aimed for, as you can tell from the listing photos.

Mirroring the challenges we overcame to rehab the property we are also facing obstacles in the real estate market.  It had been our goal to complete this rehab in the spring, assuming it would sell quickly in the hot spring market and be closed by early summer. Unfortunately due to so many complications, the construction delays meant we were set back from completion a few months.  By the time we were almost finished, we were over eager to have it sold and went ahead with listing prior to the final electrical touches being completed.  We disclosed the work yet to be finished and crossed our fingers buyers would understand.

Within two days of being “live” on MLS there had about a dozen showings and two offers – it was exactly the response we had planned for and were so thankful others were seeing the 828livingroombeauty in this property.  We were under contract by the weekend and looking forward to closing by mid-August.  During the inspection, we held our breath anticipating the report, knowing it is an inspectors job to find imperfections not to reassure buyers and encourage sales.

Sure enough, something had gone horribly wrong.  During the inspection the buying couple, realtor and inspector all smelled the aroma of burning on the main floor.  They canceled the contract.  I don’t blame them, it would have panicked me too if I had been in their shoes.  But from where I stood, it was beyond frustrating to have this burning smell occur on inspection day instead of any other day in the last six months.

burningwiremess
What the buyers were likely imagining behind the walls. (not an actual picture from the house.

Thank goodness we already had an electrician scheduled to work at the house the following week. We removed our listing from MLS in order to complete what was already planned and to find the source of the smell.  In hindsight we should have waited in the first place to list it until we knew for sure it is 100% ready, this lesson is just added to the 4,593 other lessons this house brought us.

It was necessary for the city shut down power to the house to complete the scheduled updates. Unfortunately the timing of this work synced with major power outages across Kansas City with storms and flooding rain.  Inspections and restoring power to the house took a painful and agonizing two weeks.  Finally with the power back on, the electrician was able to sniff out the source of the burning smell.  He found the issue in the master bedroom with the original light/fan.  While the fan was trying desperately to turn the blades, instead it was burning its motor and causing the frightening smell.  He was able to replace it the same day and the source of the burning smell was extinguished like the original contract.

Finally feeling confident in the completion of this project, we once again returned to live status on MLS.  Only this time we were without the big rush of “first day on the market” excitement.  In the last two weeks since we resumed showings, we have had steady traffic and received a lot of positive feedback.  There has been compliments about the finishes and various reasons why the property won’t work for certain buyers.  On a few occasions we heard the house was being considered between two and on those few occasions those buyers opted to make offers on their other choice based on square footage or location – things out of our control.  We know we will have buyers for this house who will love it and make it their home, so for now we wait.

This house brought so many lessons, including growing patience preparing for the real estate market. There are so many unique people in Kansas City and so many redevelopment companies.  Unfortunately, not everyone or every company is honest and knowledgable about what they are doing to their properties. Buying a house is typically the biggest investment anyone will ever make and because of this there are measures in place to help protect people and their decisions, like backing out of contracts. No one can take our word for the work we have done or what we plan to do before signing at the closing table.  We have to demonstrate the ethics and trustworthiness of our company and the houses we redevelop by making a good first impression, because with other houses on the market to compete with we may not get that opportunity again.

 

 

The Party House (828)

We purchased “The Party House” and got started working on demo in February of this year.  Even when we stripped it of it’s dance floor, 8 track shelf, castle-like entrance and bar; the name remained and the ‘fun’ of the party continued.  We had quite a few hurdles to overcome working on this property and felt triumphant to get it to a state we are proud of.  Beyond the success of a beautiful transformation and quick sale, we also had another priceless event to make this flip even more memorable.

The property is a ranch style house with three bedrooms and two bathrooms upstairs plus a full basement with an additional bathroom and two rooms which could be used as bedrooms.  It was a massive project to take on with some major obstacles not typical of every redevelopment project.  We wanted to keep some of the features the last owner had spent so much time and energy to personalize the home and add some of our own re-purposed materials.  One of the biggest challenges was managing how to change the not so functional spiral staircase into something unique to fit the character of the home.  Now the house is clean, warm and ready for the next owners to tailor to suit their needs.

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The new basement is bright and inviting, we had to use a few barrels from the old bar just for staging and the memory of how far this basement has come.  *Still a fun place for a party.*

After a rush of showings and a few offers within the first 48 hours on the market, our realtor called to say she had been contacted by one of the people who used to live in the house.  I was put in touch with Liz, the daughter of the former owners, who expressed her gratitude for someone buying and fixing up the home she loved so dearly.  We agreed to meet and show them how the house looks now.  Liz and her niece Jessica, who was also raised in the home, came to walk though last weekend.  It was an emotional trip down memory lane for them to see the changes and to appreciate seeing the house “brought back to life,” as Liz put it.

Liz recalled when her family moved from across the street in the 70’s and how important this neighborhood was to introduce both her and her sister to their husbands.  She FullSizeRender (1)remembered carrying bricks between the houses to construct the patio, how her dad put a giant freezer in the storage area and then built walls around it, and the hours spent on the pool table and entertaining in the basement.  She talked about where the original stairway to the basement was and how her dad “got a wild hair” to put in the spiral staircase in the middle of the entryway.  And she is looking forward to bringing home whiskey barrels from the bar as her own memento, as she remembered her dad’s dedication to making wine that everyone said tasted awful.  Jessica also had fond memories of the home and especially the bedroom in the corner where her name remained on the wall when we bought the house.  We had been calling the pink room “Jessica’s Room” all along.  She reported unfortunate memories of taking a few tumbles down the stairs when she was young.  And remembered dancing with her cousins on the dance floor and mimicking a champagne celebration by shaking up sprite, loving the sound and feeling of shoes sticking on the wooden floor.

It was extra validation of a job done well to hear from people who lived in and loved this home.  They adored the improvements of opening up the main level living area, adding a laundry room upstairs and brightening up the basement with a sliding glass door and removal of dark paneling.  They appreciated the original touches remaining in the house which blend in now with the fresh space.  Liz stated she believed her mother, who wasn’t able to keep the home and has since passed, would be so pleased to see what has become of her home.  It was an honor to have Liz and Jessica visit, hear their stories and to have them feel so happy about the effort we put into this renovation.  The business of flipping houses can be profitable and it’s the impact on people’s lives which is truly priceless.

Kansas City Home Sales

soldimagesWith a decrease in inventory and an increase in sales price, Kansas City is currently in a hot seller’s market.  According to the Kansas City Regional Association of Realtors there are 27% less homes listed for sale in the Kansas City then there were just three months ago.  And the median house price reflects the greater demand by increasing 6.7% in the same time period.  If you are hoping to buy this spring, you have a lot of competition.

On the opposite side, this is great news if you are considering putting your house on the market.  You may have heard some extraordinary stories of people who list their home, have dozens of showings and multiple offers within days.  Ordinarily we would think this kind of house would be in a prime location and listed below market value to gain this kind of response.  However, this situation is occurring all over the metro and in every different price point.  The offers have been flooding in for home owners over asking price, no contingencies, with high earnest money checks and all kinds of additional bonuses to get contracts to stand out above others.

If you want to get in on the real estate action, now is the prime time to sell.  There is some up front work to consider as buyers love clean, updated homes with great curb appeal.  However, being a sellers market means buyers are willing to put money into some updating and landscaping just to get themselves to the closing table with a home.  It still would be unreasonable to think you could sell a house at a premium if it needs a complete overhaul or major repairs.

But what if your house needs updating or big repair and you still are interested in taking advantage of the current market?  It may seem overwhelming to replace a roof, repair foundation, install new carpeting or update bathrooms or a kitchen.  We may be able to help, we won’t ask you to clean, we won’t expect you to declutter for showings, and we won’t ask you to make any updates or repairs.  We make fair market cash offers, pay closing costs and close on your timeline.  And as license real estate agents, we may recommend it would be to your benefit to list your property in the traditional way to maximize your profit and can refer a great agent to serve you.  Reach out to us for more information at contact@ecolivingproperty.com or (913)333-9643.  We would be happy to answer your questions and help you with real estate solutions.

 

 

 

Cash For The Holidays

Most American families begin to feel a rapid downhill pace from Halloween into winter and the end of the year.  It’s around this time when parents look ahead to realize the holidays are right around the corner and there is a need to prepare for the extra expenses.

This year for some families who already feel financially stressed, the holiday season will bring an extra burden.  Parents who are having difficulty maintaining their mortgage payments, keeping up with the utilities or deal with the relentless phone calls from credit collectors fear this season and facing disappointing their children.  It is the helplessly impossible reality too many Americans are facing.

We would like to help families find a solution to change their path, brighten their holiday season and begin the new year fresh.  As a real estate redevelopment company, we can help homeowners facing foreclosure, behind on bills and unable to maintain their property.  Our offers can be made within three days and we can close on their timeline.  A cash purchase could help homeowners to pay off debt and regain control of their financial picture.  Millions of homeowners have opted to sell their homes this way to avoid the hassles of selling in the traditional real estate market, including making repairs on the house and paying realtor commissions.  There is no obligation to find out information.  If this is something you or someone you know could benefit from, we would love to hear from you.

913.333.9643

contact@ecolivingproperty.com

Economically Freeing

Have you inherited a home you don’t care to maintain?  Is your home a drain on your finances?  Does it need repairs that are impossible to keep up with?  Is your credit being ruined by your ability to afford your mortgage and utilities?  Do you NEED to stop the foreclosure process?

You are not alone.  You do not have to be living with the stress and financial burden of owning a home.  At EcoLiving Property, we empower you to fix the economical picture and help homeowners back on the right path.  We provide you fast cash and close on your timeline to maximize the financial freedom you deserve.

Contact us for no obligation and more information on how we can help you.

913-333-9643