Click the images to take a video tour!
There are plenty of tough decisions to make when buying and selling a home, and choosing good movers is one of them. To provide some insight on the options, I’m sharing ratings from some recent Connecticut area moves as well as a national moving company comparison. The Connecticut input comes from a few people who completed an informal survey about four movers that handled local moves in the Fairfield County area. The national review comes from a comprehensive report by Reviews.com and provides the results of their in-depth comparison.
I asked a handful of people who recently moved for feedback about the moving companies they chose. A 10-question survey asked respondents to rate their moving company on a scale of 1 to 5, with one being terrible and five being excellent. They were asked to score based on their opinions of the quote process, price, range of services, scheduling process, efficiency and timeliness of the move, and care in handling their belongings. I received four responses, each rating a different mover. Keep in mind that every move is different with unique circumstances, but here is some feedback about one move with each company.
The customer moved from a condo in Stamford to another condo in Southport for the price of $3,500. The company received a low overall rating of 2.2. Aside from satisfaction with the process of obtaining the quote (score of 4), the available services (score of 3), the customer was not pleased with the movers, giving the company a 2 for the scheduling process and timeliness and 1s for price and handling of belongings. Their comment was, “The movers just wanted to get it done quickly and they did damage to some of my furniture. They also did not pack the items as they had indicated they would in their estimate.”
Lippincott Van Lines
This move was from a house in Seymour to another house in Fairfield. The cost was $2,000. The overall score was 3.7 with ratings of 4 on price, quote process, their range of services, and timeliness/efficiency, and 3 for the scheduling process and handling of belongings. They said they would recommend this mover, and their comment was, “Actual movers were good, sales staff could be more responsive”.
All My Sons
This company was used for a move within Connecticut from a condo to a house for $750. The customer gave them an overall rating of 3.7 with ratings of 4 on all aspects except for price and care in handling belongings for which they gave a 3. They did not share a comment.
The highest rating of the four went to Junkluggers with an overall score of 4.5. They handled a move from one house to another within Fairfield for $800. Although they received a 3 for their range of services and a 4 on their quote process, they received 5’s in all other categories. The customer said, “Junkluggers only does close moves, but they also will haul your junk away and give you a receipt for things that they bring to Goodwill. We used them for our move – you pay by the amount of things you have (how much space it takes in the truck). They were super quick and handled everything great!”
I hope this article provides some insight for readers getting ready to attempt a big move!
For questions and info regarding your future moving plans, send me a note on the form below. I’m here to help!
If you own an investment property and are thinking of selling it to buy a different one (or two), you can do a 1031 Exchange and enjoy great benefits! What’s so great about it, and how do you do it?
Here’s how it works-
And here are six amazing benefits of doing 1031 Exchanges-
Consider an “equity build strategy” suggested by the Midland company (referenced below) that looks like this:
It’s a good idea to use a QI that is local or that works in many states and is familiar with the varying regulations and taxes in different states. You want a QI that has experience and is bonded and insured. You also want to look for one that is a member of the National Federation of Exchange Accommodators and that is a Certified Exchange Specialist (CEC).
Here are some resources to get you started:
For help selling and locating properties, please reach out to yours truly!
Ronald and Sara were a happy young couple ready to jump into home buying and get their first home together. When they called me, they knew what they wanted, a four-bedroom home with nice property and a pool in the million dollar range. There was a house, in particular, they had seen online that they were very excited to see right away. They thought this could be it, and they would be buying their first home.
I was excited for them too! I asked if they had spoken to a mortgage professional yet. They had not, so I gave them a few reputable contacts to reach out to and told them they should have a mortgage pre-approval before they started looking. They asked why, and I told them that the pre-approval serves three critical purposes, one, it confirms that they are eligible for a loan, two, it lets them know what their spending limit is and what the associated monthly payments will be, and three, it positions them as strong and qualified buyers when presenting an offer for the home they want to buy.
So they forged ahead, chose a lender, and sought their pre-approval. But they were soon shocked and disappointed to learn that they would not be eligible for a mortgage for at least another year.
Ronald and Sara were a power couple with great jobs and ample income. Sara had a Ph.D. and was the director of a graduate school. Ronald was an emergency room physician.
But, what they didn’t realize was that all the student loans they were paying off gave them a ratio of debt to income that was too high to get a mortgage. So we found a nice home for them to rent for a year. In the meantime, they worked hard with the credit expert company, North Shore Advisory to ensure they were on the fast track for managing their debt and raising their credit scores within the one-year timeline they had set as a goal.
Fast forward a year later, and they sailed through the pre-approval process to obtain a Certified Pre-Approval from William Raveis Mortgage, got engaged, and found and closed on a gorgeous new home in the university area of Fairfield, Connecticut!
Ronald and Sara also managed to jet-set off to Africa for a pre-honeymoon celebration on safari before returning to their new home to plan their wedding! Clearly they were perfectly situated to live happily ever after, but what were the lessons learned along the way?
Always get a pre-approval before you start shopping for a home so that you know where you stand, avoid unexpected setbacks, and can position yourself as a competitive buyer. Besides, an offer to purchase a property is not complete or acceptable without a pre-approval letter from your lender or proof of cash.
Be sure your pre-approval is of the utmost quality, as they are not all created equal. Recent changes to national lending regulations add extra time sensitivity and make this more important than ever. There are a number of new technology enhancements available that can make the whole mortgage process faster, easier, and more transparent for consumers.
William Raveis Mortgage is the only mortgage banker to provide a Certified Pre-Approval. This means that when they present a Certified Pre-Approval to a buyer, they have completed a full review of credit, income, and assets, reviewed supporting documentation and double-checked it all via an automated underwriting system to ensure that when the big day comes, the buyers get their loan and the sale goes through.
Last, but not least, it’s important to be aware of all the factors that can impact your credit score because, the lower your score, the more you will pay for your mortgage, (as well as insurance and other things). In fact, it’s a good idea to check your credit well in advance of applying for a loan so that you have time to work on it if need be. Visit North Shore Advisory, Inc. for an expert resource about credit tips and strategy. Once you have your good credit and Certified Pre-Approval in place, make sure you don’t do anything that can change your credit score before you close! Even a tiny negative change to your credit can bump up your interest rate and suddenly put your dream home out of reach. So check with your lender or Realtor about things you should or should not do during your home purchase process.
Then you are ready to make your dream home come true!
For questions about the process of buying or selling a home, or if you’re thinking about a move this season, send me a note below!
Six Hot Trends that are Super Cool for Consumers!
an engaging experience that also saves them time. In addition to creative videos, this includes 3D touring, virtual reality, drone photography, virtual staging and even hologram projection of furniture into rooms. 3D tours enable viewers to virtually walk through a property while using their computer mouse to “go” anywhere in the home. The tool also creates a virtual doll house that lets buyers float through the floors and get an overall feel for the layout, orientation, and flow. Inman News recently talked about virtual reality tours that use special goggles to create an experience close to being there in person as well as gear that projects holograms of furniture into a space to visualize it “for real”. Last, but not least, busy or far-away consumers can benefit from a live virtual tour via Skype.
Which trends to you think have the most promise? What other trends are you seeing that are consumer driven? From a consumer perspective, what new technology services would you like to see?
For more information or questions about your moving plans, contact me using the form below.
Well, the winter weather was balmy for awhile, but we’re off to a brisk start for the New Year. It’s a perfect time to dream about summer, so mark your calendars for some great beachfront open house events you can look forward to!
Lordship Lifestyle at Russian Beach
OPEN HOUSE: Sunday, January 24, 1-3 PM
Visit this better-than-new colonial with a new price of $859,000 and water views from every room! Enjoy an open flow, high ceilings, ample light and a private fenced yard for relaxing and entertaining.
Kensie Point on the Sound
OPEN HOUSE: Sunday, February 28, 1-3 PM
Come to the beach in Fairfield to see this turnkey beachfront condo priced at $845,000 and enjoy the fabulous water views!
Come to the beach and make an offer that can change your life!
Contact us with any questions or to request more info-
A seasoned recruiter for a financial firm on Merritt 7 in Norwalk Connecticut, Annie knew a good candidate when she saw one. The perfect asset for the current position was one she had already recruited once before, and that would be her husband! Given their relationship, Annie’s boss had to step in and seal the deal, but Andrew was on board in no time.
The next step was to move from their home in Avon to a town closer to Norwalk that was affordable and had good schools. Annie’s boss lived in Fairfield and was a strong advocate. She convinced Annie and Andrew that this town would fit the bill.
So Annie and Andrew’s agent in Avon called me to help them find a new home in Fairfield. We spoke on the phone, and I set up their online search. Immediately Annie saw something she liked and came to see it the next day. Andrew couldn’t get free until the weekend, and by then the house was gone. Three more times, the timing was too late or multiple bids got in the way, and three more homes were lost. Homes in their price range in the Fairfield university area were in extremely high demand and flying off the shelf!
Although Andrew liked the homes he had seen, he was still having a little trouble understanding the value for the prices in Fairfield compared to Avon. Annie and I gushed about the treasured amenities in Fairfield such as the gorgeous beaches, convenient train stations, chic eateries, vicinity to Manhattan and the fantastic vibrant community. I wish I had this video tour of Fairfield at the time! Still, Andrew just shrugged his shoulders and went with the flow, primarily motivated by a quick commute.
Finally, a lovely pricier home had a price reduction. We immediately went to see it and this time lucked out. Annie and Andrew landed a beautiful expanded Cape on a pretty university area street. They lost no time starting to make memories with their little son George, their new neighbors and all the block parties scheduled for the year.
A short time later, Annie sent me a note that said, “Hi Linda, we love the house, and we have fallen in love with Fairfield. We have only been in the house a little over a month, but it truly feels like home, and I would say George agrees! We cannot thank you enough for all of your help. You were terrific to work with, patient and helped us every step of the way. Relocating to a new area is overwhelming, and you really made us feel at ease throughout the whole process. Thanks again for everything. We hope to see you around town!”
So we welcome Annie and Andrew to Fairfield and the university area along with some of our other recent new neighbors, Ping and Danian and Rich and Chris. Annie and Andrew’s story is all about taking that leap toward the next chapter of exciting new beginnings- A new love. A new job. A new town. A new home. Follow your dreams, and the rest is history in the making!
For questions about your next move, contact me any time!