Factors That Influence Your Home's Value

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Real Estate Consultant at Keller Williams Alabama Gulf Coast

There are five major factors that influence the value of your home. Some are out of your control, some change with the market, and some are all up to you.

In the Gulf Shores market, it all starts with location, location, location. Appraisers and your agent alike will use similar properties in your area to determine what your home is worth - what we refer to as "comps." Location also factors into things like proximity to amenities, or on the other side, proximity to undesirable things like busy streets or power lines.

Location alone has numerous variables that affect value. Future location is another factor - what will your area look like in the next five, 10, and 20 years? Similarly, zoning laws and changes can have a huge impact on value in the not-so-distant future.

Condition of the market is an overlooked factor in your home's value. Homeowners often think that value doesn't change, but what the market is willing to pay for your home is truly its value. When interest rates are low like they are currently, buying power goes up, and so does your home's value.

Finally, the condition of your home is a huge factor in determining value. Today's buyers are much more attracted to move-in ready homes that show well, thanks to being clean, bright, and well-staged.

For a home valuation that actually takes location into account, unlike Zillow or Redfin, try our free home valuation tool.

If you have questions about home values or you're just thinking about buying or selling a home, give me a call or send me an email. I'd love to help you out!

Cal Carter

251-923-2322

Since September is National Life Insurance Awareness month, I've had preparedness on the brain a bit more than I normally do - and trust me, it was already on it a lot! Being an insurance agent means that my #1 priority is making sure that my friends, family, and clients are safe, informed, and insured... I spend a lot of time thinking about preparedness!
 
Since you can never be too prepared for the many obstacles life may put in your way down the road, I wanted to talk to you for a minute about something that many of us know we should do, but never get around to doing, and that's completing a Household Inventory.
 
You need to complete a Household Inventory. Doing so allows you to keep a record of what you own, simplifying the process of sorting through damaged items after the storm should you need to file a claim. 
 
Taking inventory can be tedious, but if you ever have a fire or a break-in, you'll be glad you have a record of what you own. Make sure you are keeping track of:
 
• The value of each of your possessions, room by room.
• Serial numbers wherever possible.
 Support this inventory record with photos or video.

 
While conducting your Home Inventory, you will want to Move from room to room recording the value of each of your possessions. Examples of ways to complete your Home Inventory include:
  • Notepad and camera - as you take photographs, write down the details of each item.
  • Video camera - this is an easy method because you can narrate the details of each item while videotaping.
  • Personal computer - personal finance software packages often include a home inventory program.
While Conducting Your Home Inventory, Don't Forget:
  • Make sure you record the contents of closets, drawers and cabinets.  The value of little things can add up quickly
  • Store all lists, photographs and videotapes in a safe place off the premises.  It is a good idea to keep back-ups as well.
  • Update your home inventory.  After making a significant purchase, be sure to add the information to your home inventory while it is still fresh in your mind.
  • Keep all receipts, especially for big items such as jewelry, furs and collectibles. 
We recommend that you place this inventory in a safe place outside of your home.  You are more than welcome to send it to us and we can scan it into your file in our office.
 
Of course we never want to be on the receiving end of any of life's curveballs, but they're inevitable, and the best thing we can do is be prepared.
If you have any questions about your Home Inventory or need to file a claim, please contact our office at 251-626-8900.
Always Be Prepared,
 

Tyler Horton
Owner/Principal

Eversure Insurance

 

Sinking Boat Insurance Myths

 

You don't believe in the Loch Ness Monster. You don’t believe your friend caught Jaws fishing off the Florida coast. So why do most boaters believe boat insurance covers them wherever they go?

 

Progressive surveyed more than 1,000 boat owners. It uncovered a few insurance myths floating around. Here's a sample of the findings and the facts behind each:

 

Myth: Everyone pays more for insurance because of the hurricanes from a couple of years ago.

Reality: Even though it’s believed by 74 percent of respondents, it isn’t true. Boat insurers generally price policies based on claims in each state. For example, Ohio customers won't pay more for insurance because of hurricanes in Florida.

 

Myth: Boat insurance covers me anywhere I decide to go boating.

Reality: Seventy-six percent of respondents believed this one. The reality is some insurers only provide coverage where the boat is used most. Insurers may limit coverage to 100 nautical miles of your home port. Progressive provides coverage virtually anywhere you decide to go in the continental U.S. and Canada.

 

Myth: I’ll get a better insurance rate if I buy from the same company that insures my home or car.

Reality: Buying more than one product from the same insurance company doesn't mean you get the best rate – even though 45 percent of respondents thought so. Boaters can save by shopping around and combining specialized policies from different companies.

 

"It’s important to understand what’s available," said Dominic Mediate of Progressive. "You want to be properly protected in case your boat is stolen, you get into an accident or contents are damaged. We’re separating fact from fiction so boaters can make the best insurance decisions possible."

 

Three Tips To Help Your Vacation Get Off To A Worry-Free Start

With vacation season in full swing, you may be in the process of planning an annual getaway. While most people spend lots of time looking for ways to maximize their budget, one costly decision is often left to the last minute—whether to buy the optional insurance offered by a rental car company.

 

“Deciding whether to buy ‘damage waivers’ or insurance at the rental car counter can be a confusing experience—especially if you don’t know if you’re already covered by your personal auto insurance policy,” said Rick Crawley of the Progressive Group of Insurance Companies. “Optional rental car insurance can cost between $7 and $25 per day, depending on the rental car company, vehicle make and model and type of waiver. Those daily charges can significantly add to the cost of your rental.”

 

Follow these three tips, courtesy of Coastal Insurance, to help you decide whether or not you should buy the coverage:

 

1. Consult with an independent insurance agency – like Coastal Insurance. As licensed insurance professionals, independent insurance agents and brokers can review and evaluate your policies to find out if the coverage you have on your personal vehicle provides protection for you in a rental car.

 

2. Check with your credit card company. Some credit card companies provide coverage at no charge if you use their card to charge the cost of the rental. However, some restrictions may apply so be sure to ask for a description of the exact coverages provided.

 

3. Take your personal auto insurance policy and details of your coverages with you to the rental car counter. You may be asked a question that these papers can help answer—or, if you’re in doubt, you’ll have your agent’s name and phone number readily available. “We want people to have the information they need to make more informed decisions about car insurance,” said Crawley.

 

“Knowing whether you need to buy additional coverage can save you money and give you peace of mind so you can enjoy your vacation. Don’t start off your trip questioning your decisions—take control by talking with your independent agent or broker and knowing the answers to those inevitable questions.”

Shedding Light On Car Insurance Savings

It can be easier than you think to put the brakes on high auto insurance rates. As an independent agency, Coastal Insurance can help! We can review your policy and possibly help you find a variety of illuminating ways to save money. Here are some things you may want to consider:

 

1 Shop for comparrison rates. This is the single most important thing you can do to get the best possible rate.   The difference between the highest and the lowest rate could be hundreds of dollars.

 

2 Reduce or drop physical damage coverage on an older car.  Depending on the car's age and where you live, comprehensive and collision coverage may not be worth keeping.  We can give you advice on whether it makes sense to reduce or drop this coverage altogether.

 

3 Raise your deductibles. According to the insurance information institute, raising your deductibles from $200 to $500 could reduce your collision and comprehensive cost by 15 to 30 percent.  In addition, because the average driver files a collision claim once every ten years, odds are that over the lifetime of your car, a higher deductible will save you money.  We can show you how raising your deductibles will lower your premium.

 

4 Look for discounts.  Many insurance companies reduce premiums for certain driver traits or car features.  For example, being a homeowner, nonsmoker, students with good grades, senior citizens who have taken an appoved defensive driving course, people who only drive for pleasure, cars kept in garages, antilock brakes, anti-theft devices, air bags, etc. Ask us to check.

 

5 Sometimes having your car and home insured with the same company can be your best option.   Many companies give substanital multi-policy discounts. So it is in your best interest to ask for a bundled home and auto rate.

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