Open Sunday July 26 2-4! 5420 COURTNEY AVENUE TUSCALOOSA AL 35406

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Come out Sunday to see this great home in The Townes of North River!

Open Sunday July 26th 2015 from 2-4pm

This home is the lowest price per square foot alley home in the ever popular Townes of North River. You will appreciate this home’s unique floor plan the moment you step into the formal entry. This 3100 square foot, four bedroom three and a half bath home has many features not found in other homes in the neighborhood including built in speakers on both front and back porches and the main living space. There is also a bedroom over the garage that would be a great playroom, and a teen suite or man cave which is also wired with speakers. The back patio with shade sail canopy and built in gas grill is the perfect spot for your next barbecue. Tell your Realtor you want to see this home today!

For more information go to www.chriswlee.com/100632 or call Chris Lee with RealtySouth at 205-233-5183.

Price:                           $414,900

Bedrooms:                  4

Baths:                           3.5

Sq Footage:                 3100 +/-


Chris Lee   –  RealtySouth  –  Tuscaloosa, AL           205-233-5183          www.chriswlee.com      clee@realtysouth.com

New Listing! 6412 Championship Drive, Tuscaloosa AL 35405

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Amazing Home on Tall Pines Golf Course!

This spacious open floor plan with lots of natural light and high ceilings, arched doors, two decks with great views of the 15th tee on Tall Pines golf course. The main level has a formal dining room, great room, kitchen and breakfast area, master bedroom suite, two additional bedrooms and a second bath. The walkout basement features a large open rec. room that could be used as a downstairs living room, a guest bedroom and a third bath. The unfinished portion of the basement has a storage/workshop area with full lighting and is perfect for hobbies or bad weather. It is easy to join the Tall Pines Country Club with golf, swimming and a clubhouse.

HOA covers all yard maintenance (mowing front and back yard including trimming shrubs), storage area for an RV or boat, sprinkler system (water for the sprinkler system, maintenance and repair) painting the trim on exterior of the home (decks are not included in trim) and common areas.

MLS# 102542 (Click here for more details)

Price:                           $299,900

Bedrooms:                   4

Baths:                            3

Sq Footage:                 3046 +/-

Other Features:            Sits on Hole 15 of Tall Pines Golf Course, Walk out Basement, Master on Main level, Workshop/Extra Storage, 2 decks (one upper and one lower), Very low maintenance!

Chris Lee   –  RealtySouth  –  Tuscaloosa, AL           205-233-5183          www.chriswlee.com      clee@realtysouth.com

Price Reduced! 1426 MAXWELL CIRCLE TUSCALOOSA, AL 35405

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 LOCATION!!  Close to Schools, Restaurants and Grocery Stores

This home has great curb appeal and is within walking distance of Englewood elementary school and grocery stores. This home has an open floor plan, with a large master suite and walk in closets. The kitchen has lots of counter and cabinet space and walks out onto a covered patio and a spacious fenced back yard. Other features include a large pantry, security system and a fireplace in the family room.

MLS# 100182

Price:                           $139,900

Bedrooms:                   3

Baths:                             2

Sq Footage:                 1271+/-

Other Features:            Close to Englewood Elementary, Taylorville Primary School, Hillcrest High and Middle Schools.  This property is also very close to local restaurants and grocery stores.

Chris Lee   –  RealtySouth  –  Tuscaloosa, AL           205-233-5183          www.chriswlee.com      clee@realtysouth.com

NEW PRICE!!! 9515 Crete Circle Tuscaloosa, AL 35406

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Custom Home North of the River for Under $103 Per Sq. Ft.  –  Built by Manderson Construction 

Open floor plan with beautiful hardwood floors, kitchen cabinets and granite countertops. All three downstairs bedrooms have new carpet. The Master Bedroom has a large master bath with tile shower and jetted tub. The large walk-in closet has plenty of storage. The kitchen has custom cabinets with vent hood, lots of counter and cabinet space and a 2 seat bar. The kitchen also opens into a sun/keeping room. Upstairs, the large 4th bedroom shares a full bathroom with a huge rec room that could be used as a 5th bedroom. The back yard has a covered patio and a fenced backyard. The neighborhood also features a playground, private lake and a pier with a cooking area on Lake Tuscaloosa.

MLS# 101058

Price:                     $349,900

Bedrooms:            4

Bathrooms:           3.5

Square Footage:   3400 +/-

Other Features:    Downstairs Master, Keeping room off Kitchen, Upstairs Bedroom and Bath, Rec. Room, Fenced Back Yard, Custom Cabinets and much more!

Chris Lee   –  RealtySouth  –  Tuscaloosa, AL           205-233-5183          www.chriswlee.com      clee@realtysouth.com

What are Tuscaloosa Home Buyers Looking for?

Young Couple moving into new home

Photo Courtesy of IStockPhoto.com

Gen Y/millennials, born between 1980 and 2000, now make up the largest percentage of today’s buyers at 31 percent, according to the National Association of Realtors®, followed by Gen X buyers at 30 percent and younger boomers at 16 percent.  In order to successfully market your home to these buyers you and your agent must first understand what they are looking for in a new home.

All markets are a little different but these are the trends we are seeing in Tuscaloosa.

  1.  Kitchens and Baths

Updated Bathroom

Today’s buyers are seeking updated kitchens and baths due to their limited budgets.  A majority of their savings will go toward the down payment and furnishings and kitchens and baths are some of the most expensive parts of a home to update.

Buyers are also looking for a spacious kitchen with an open floor plan.  A generation ago, formal dining rooms were on everyone’s wish list, but today there isn’t as much appeal to a true formal dining room.  The reason is how today’s home buyers entertain, they want people to flow through the home during a gathering rather than be closed off in rooms.  The kitchen, especially one with a bar area, has become the hangout room along with the family room.  An open floor plan that can easily transition from the kitchen to the TV/Family room is very high on the list.  Is some aspects the kitchen is the new living room.

2.  Low Maintenance

Buyers today are looking for homes that have low maintenance features such as wood floors (as opposed to carpet) and granite as well as other solid surface countertops because they are both hassle-free and attractive.  This goes along to the outside of the home as well. These homebuyers grew up watching their parents spend their weekends painting, cutting the grass, and cleaning gutters.  Today’s homebuyers don’t want to do those things! They want their weekends to themselves.

3.  The Home Office

Home Office

Did you know that over 13 million Americans work from home?  With that trend continuing home offices have great appeal.  Home offices are not just for those who work full time at home.  As technology advances more and more people will have the options to work from home at least part of the time.  This dedicated space is very important because it can help them keep focused and to concentrate while working or simply paying bills. An office room doesn’t have to be used as an office. They make a great play room or a home gym, but remember if it doesn’t have a window and a closet it is NOT an extra bedroom.

4.  Location, Location, Location

Home buyers today, especially younger buyers tend to see location differently than their parents.  Young buyer are looking for properties that are close to their work or their favorite locations to hang out.  Many home buyers in Tuscaloosa have a certain area of town they would like to live in, especially those with children, others are looking for the right amount of space. With private schools and home schooling being as popular as they are in Tuscaloosa a great location to some buyers doesn’t mean being in the most popular public school zone.  Make sure your agent is aware what is around your home in terms of restaurants, coffee shops, parks, private schools, etc.

There are always other factors that affect what buyers are looking for in Tuscaloosa.  While this isn’t usually a main selling point, the energy efficiency of a home is not far from a buyers mind.  Many times they will figure these costs into their budget so they can make upgrades to improve efficiency after closing, this will affect their offer price.

Another factor many buyers are looking at is the homes technology appeal. Questions that will have to be addressed when selling your home will include, what internet service providers are available?, do you get good mobile phone service inside the home?  These are very important things to the younger generation of home buyers and this is even more true in rural areas of Tuscaloosa.

Everyone watches real estate shows on TV and these have impacted the ways buyers look and perceive a home. People will comment on how a home is or isn’t staged.  A staged home can make a huge difference to a sellers bottom line.  People generally make up their mind about a home as soon as they walk through the door, the expectations must be met or exceeded in order to bring good offers.  In addition to staging a home, make sure there are lots of HD photos which are professional quality.  It is hard to underestimate the importance of the quality of the photography on your online listing.  Many buyers will not even schedule a showing if there are not many photos or if the photos are not good.

Chris Lee   –  RealtySouth  –  Tuscaloosa, AL           205-233-5183          www.chriswlee.com      clee@realtysouth.com

Thinking about Buying a home? Watch out for these pitfalls!

Real Estate Pitfalls

You are probably expecting me to tell you the normal pitfalls you see every time you google “things home buyers need to watch out for”.  You know to make sure you get a home inspection, make sure you don’t bust your budget, make sure you get everything in writing, etc.   Although all of these are very important, they are not the most common in the Tuscaloosa area.  Here are the most common in our area.

  1. Not adhering to contract timelines: We see inspection dates of 14 days fairly regularly in this area.  On our contract we included home inspection, wood infestation report, septic inspection and survey in this inspection period.  That date is not something we merely TRY to adhere to, we MUST adhere to it.  If the inspections are not completed during this time frame then you are accepting this property in “As-Is” condition.   Your Realtor should make you aware of these dates and make sure you don’t forget about these inspections.   Other deadlines are applying for a mortgage, and closing dates.
  2. Not getting a septic inspection: Obviously this is only needed on properties that have a septic tank.  But I have seen many buyers want to pass up this inspection due to the cost, which is around $300-$450.  This inspection can save you thousands!  I have seen some septic repairs in excess of $10,000.  This is not something you want to have to deal with right after you make one of the biggest purchases of your life.
  3. Thinking foreclosures are the best deals:  Although many foreclosures can be deals, most of the time in order to make that deal a reality you need lots of cash on hand!  The banks that own these properties will not do repairs other than what they have already done.  This means all of the work that needs to be done falls on you.  Not to mention the issues you may have getting a mortgage on the property due to its condition.  I am not saying to avoid foreclosures completely but you do need to be very discerning when looking to purchase one.  You don’t want to be in a situation where you purchase a home and find thousands of dollars in repairs and upgrades that are needed once you move in, even though it passed appraisal.
  4. Spending money on credit before closing:  DO NOT BUY ANYTHING ON CREDIT UNTIL YOU CLOSE! If you must: talk to your lender before you do it.  I have seen this happen too many times.  Once, while representing a seller we had a buyer that purchased almost $10,000 worth of furniture before closing.  She didn’t think the lender would pull her credit again.  Just FYI lenders pull credit one last time a day or so before closing to make sure your situation has not changed. The situation with the woman who purchased $10,000 in furniture put her over the allowed debt to income ratio, and the furniture company would not allow her to return the furniture, so she now has $10,000 worth of furniture and no home to put it in.  The seller kept her earnest money.    This is not a situation you want to put yourself in!
  5. Letting too many people tell you what is best for you:  Now I am not saying your parents and your friends opinion is not important, but I have seen a few people that “know” the market better than the statistics from MLS.   I saw a young couple loose out on a great deal because they allowed a distant relative to convince them that the home was way over priced for the area.   The statistics showed that the home was underpriced by about $10,000.   Needless to say the home sold a few days later for more than asking price and shortly after the home down the street came on the market for $15,000 more. It was smaller and had fewer upgrades.  If you feel good about a property you like and the statistics show it is not overpriced don’t let others convince you differently.  They will not be the ones purchasing or living in the home.
  6. Don’t forget to check your emotions at the door:  Its easy to fall in love with a home and overlook, or underestimate repairs and necessary upgrades.   By allowing yourself to fall in love with a home too quickly you risk overpaying, or worse, not getting the few necessary inspections that will cost you down the road.   Also, there is no guarantee you will get the home you are in love with.   The market has become very competitive and we are seeing more multiple offer situations on homes that are in popular areas and are priced right.  If you don’t get the home, don’t get down.  There will be others!

Chris Lee   –  RealtySouth  –  Tuscaloosa, AL           205-233-5183          www.chriswlee.com      clee@realtysouth.com