Kathy Murphy - RE/MAX Real Estate Group search for homes in Billerica, free mls listings


You’re about to yield a profit on the sale of your house. After several months of home staging, marketing, meeting with your realtor and speaking with prospective home buyers, you’ve finally found the right person to transfer ownership of your home to. Or have you?

Reasons a house buyer backs away from a deal

It’s a hard pill to swallow. Yet, there are times when a home buyer backs away from the deal. Even worse is when the buyer backs away at the last minute. Following area few reasons why house sales fall through. It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with reasons why a house sale might not go all the way through, so you can prepare yourself in the event that your house is on the market longer than you anticipated needed to keep it for sale.

  • Job loss – There’s not a lot that house buyers can do should they lose their job. Because they don’t have income to pay a mortgage, they may have no choice except to walk away from the deal.
  • Marital status change – As shocking as it may sound, a relationship could end midway through the house shopping and buying process. One or both people in the relationship may decide that buying a house won’t repair their marriage and decide that it’s best to end the relationship and stop all future legal agreements and contracts.
  • Failed inspection – Even if your house inspection passes, a buyer might not move forward with buying your home if their independent inspection fails.
  • Pets – Damage caused by your pets can deter house buyers, so too can pet hair and pet poop. Regularly clean up after pets,both inside and outside your house.
  • Neighborhood event – Should a natural disaster or crime occur in your neighborhood, it could cost you a buyer. For example, a buyer might back away if there’s a tornado or flood in your neighborhood.

What you can do if your house sale falls through

In addition to the above reasons, house buyers may refuse to tell you exactly why they decided to change their mind and not buy your house after all. There are instances when a buyer might feel embarrassed to tell you why they are backing away from the deal.

Regardless of the reason why a buyer chooses not to move forward with a house buy, there may be a few things that you can do. Top of the list of choices is to put your house back on the market. If buyers cite the price on the house, you may have to lower the price on your house to finalize a sale.

Although you may feel that you deserve to keep the deposit (if the house deal went that far), depending on the contract details, the buyer may end up with the deposit. The time to protect yourself regarding the deposit is before the contract is signed. Indicate who will keep the deposit clearly in the contract.

Because a failed home inspection is a leading reason why buyers walk away from a deal, to sale your house conduct repairs and maintenance that was highlighted during an inspection. Unless your house is unusually small or lacking a necessary bedroom, bathroom or closet, avoid adding rooms to your house just to sale the property, as this will erode the profits that you gain from the sale of your home.


Few people may have thought that it would ever pay off. But, there are people who bought a house at the height of the Great Recession who are earning a significant profit on that house. Buying a house when prices are low then selling that same house after  prices rise is almost a sure way to generate a profit.

Open your eyes to how a second home saves you money

Yet, you don't have to sell a house at a profit to generate income from a second home. Keeping a second home pays off in more ways. An example is when  you buy a second house while your child is instill in high school.

During this time, you could rent the house to people who recently relocated to the area.These are the very people who may most appreciate the chance to move into a well cared for home on a good lease.

After your child graduates from high school and enrolls in college, she could live in the second house that you bought. Outcome of this is saving the money that you would have spent on out-of-state campus housing.

Buy a second house in an upscale community that's within walking distance of major colleges or universities and you could save yourself or your child the money that you would have spent on a new car or truck for your child. You could also put your child within walking distance of major companies, places where your child could gain firsthand experience in his major by participating in rewarding internships.

Even more savings attached to owning a second home

But, you don't need to have college aged children to benefit from owning a second house. Owning a second house could save you money if you use the second house as your:

  • Vacation home - Although the cost of an overnight hotel stay varies by facility, you could easily spend $150 a night on a hotel if you're vacationing with two to three people. Over the course of ten days, that comes to $1,500.
  • Rental property - Rent out your second house and you could generate enough money to cover the entire cost of your main home.
  • Retirement home - Instead of paying for costly nursing home stays, you could encourage your parents to relocate to your second home. If your parents are facing health challenges, you could pay someone to care for your parents inside the second home. Even with the cost of the daily care, you might spend less than what it would cost to keep your parents in a nursing home.

You could also operate a full scale business out of a second house. One good business that you could operate out of a second house is a bed and breakfast. The more creative you are, the more ideas may surface that reveal to you surprising ways that a second home can save you money.


Open houses are essential for selling your home. They give buyers the opportunity to tour your home and visualize them living there. But an open house can also have a negative affect on buyers if the proper steps aren’t taken in advance. Let’s take a look at the tips below to help ensure a successful open house.  Clean & Organize: It is very important to clean and organize your home before your open house. A clean home gives the buyers an opportunity to see the home for what it is, and not all of your stuff and clutter. While touring your home, it will give the buyers the opportunity to visualize themselves living in the home and how they would set up each room. Clutter makes it difficult to do this as it makes rooms look smaller and covers up the true potential. Remove Personality: It’s best to remove your personality from your home when selling, and especially before an open house. You can always add your things back in after the open house. Things like pictures and picture frames, your children’s drawings on the refrigerator, other personal belongings, and so on. Removing your personality and creating a neutral home will better allow for buyers to visualize themselves living there and making it their own. Photos & Video: Since online research is often the first step one takes in the home buying process, the photos and video of your home will be the first impression that a buyer has. And you want to make that the best first impression possible. Having amazing photos of your home and posting them with your listing and online will likely attract more interest and therefore attracting more buyers to your open house. Photos that are not so great may make even the most amazing home seem drab and not worth the travel to the open house. The photos you place online could make or break a homebuyers interest and desire to see more. Social Media: Utilizing social media is the best way to get the word out about your home being on the market and your upcoming open house. Realtors and agents are already using it, but you should also be taking advantage of it. Sharing or creating posts of your online listing and asking your friends to share will only benefit you. You’d be surprised how many will comment on posts to tag their friends and family. It may bring more buyers and in turn speed up the sale of your home. Follow these tips for the most successful open house possible. It’s important to be mindful of the market and your home when determining what successful means, but what is important is an offer or multiple offers if you’re lucky. So spruce up your home and follow these tips and you should be on your way to placing a sold sign in front of your home in no time.

If you plan to buy a home in the upcoming days, weeks or months, it often pays to learn about the real estate market. By doing so, you can understand various best practices for purchasing a house and streamline the homebuying process.

Ultimately, there are several best practices for buying a house, and these include:

1. Become a Homebuying Expert

What differentiates a buyer's market from a seller's market? How do you submit an offer on a house? And what should you expect during a home inspection? These are just some of the questions that you'll need to consider to become a homebuying expert.

As a homebuying expert, you'll be better equipped than others to plan a successful homebuying journey.

Typically, a homebuying expert asks lots of questions and devotes the necessary time and resources to learn about the housing market. This individual also is open to expert homebuying advice and recommendations and will do whatever it takes to discover the right house, at the right price, regardless of the real estate market's conditions.

2. Get a Home Loan

For those who plan to buy a house, it helps to save money in advance. That way, you can shop for a house and have sufficient funds available for a sizable down payment.

Furthermore, you should start searching for a home loan as soon as possible. Because the sooner that you secure a home loan, the sooner that you can kick off a home search with a budget in hand.

To obtain a home loan, you should meet with several banks and credit unions. These lenders will evaluate your credit history, income and other financial factors and make a home loan offer.

After you accept a home loan offer, you can officially start your home search. And if you find a home that you'd like to buy, you can submit an offer without having to scramble to get a home loan at the last possible moment.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

When it comes to buying a home, hiring a real estate agent is essential. In fact, a real estate agent will provide plenty of support throughout the homebuying journey, ensuring that you can discover your dream house without delay.

A real estate agent first will learn about your homebuying goals. Then, this housing market professional can help you narrow your home search.

In addition, a real estate agent will set up home showings, submit home offers on your behalf and keep you up to date on homebuying negotiations. Perhaps best of all, if you ever have homebuying concerns or questions, a real estate agent is happy to respond to them at any time.

Buying a home can be a quick, seamless process, particularly for those who work with a real estate agent. Reach out to a local real estate agent today, and you can move one step closer to making your homeownership dreams come true.


Saturday morning is the time of week when many Americans wake, eat a hurried breakfast then head into the closet or basement for a bucket, broom and a rag. Depending on your family house cleaning traditions, when you were a kid you might not have been allowed to go outside and play with your friends until after the house was clean.

It's time to take another look at long standing house cleaning traditions

It was the only thing that put a damper on your Saturday, the one day of the week when kids generally spend all day doing fun things. Of all house cleaning traditions, this one may have been one of the most effective at teaching you and your young brothers and sisters responsibility.

Taking the load of handling every house cleaning chore solo off your mother was another positive takeaway gained from this house cleaning tradition. Years of practicing this house cleaning strategy may have caused you to believe that there was no other way to keep a house clean.

Waiting until the day after Friday to do all of your house cleaning could also start to take the vibrancy out of Saturday. Add in grocery shopping, other household errands, clothes shopping and potentially taking in a movie and Saturday could pass without you sitting and relaxing for 15 minutes.

How cleaning your house in five days could work

You could clean faster to get back more relaxation time. Another approach that you could take is to extend house cleaning chores across five days. For example, you could:

  • Toss out expired food and items that you don't use, items that merely clutter your home on Monday.
  • Dust furniture on Tuesday evening. If you operate a business from home, dusting furniture could become part of your early morning routine.
  • Vacuum carpet and sweep and mop hardwood and tile floors on Wednesday. You could wait until the last day of the month to wax hardwood floors.
  • Toss in a load of laundry on Thursday.
  • Hit the grocery store on Friday just before you come home from work. You might beat crowds.

Limit the time that you spend performing each house cleaning chore to an hour. Teach everyone at your house to pick up after him or herself every day and your house might stay presentable. Give each person living at your house a cleaning responsibility and each person might only clean one to two hours a week. You'd also get your Saturday back.

Everything doesn't have to be done at once

Clean your house in five days and you'll only have two days to completely forget about house cleaning. On the other hand, you won't have to spend more than an hour in a single day doing any house cleaning chore. It's like washing dishes and pots and pans as you finish preparing a cuisine rather than waiting until after all dishes have been prepared and everyone has eaten.

That olddish washing tradition leaves you with a sink full of dirty dishes to wash after you've spent hours entertaining guests. It seems like a win until you enter your kitchen and stare at two full sinks of dirty pots, pans and dishes.

Breaking house cleaning chores into small chunks can add more fun and relaxation time to your weekday and weekends. It may also give you ideas on how you can break down other household traditions that might not be serving you well.




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