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Friday, February 16, 2018

How To Give Your Kitchen a Quick Facelift: Agent Advice

Looking to sell your home? You may consider updating your kitchen to add value to your home. If you can’t afford the time and money required to do a full kitchen overhaul, HUNT Real Estate Sales Professional Lauren from out Brighton Pittsford office has some great tips on how to give your kitchen facelift.


  1. Trade out your old appliances. Old black or white appliances can make a kitchen look old. Swap out your old appliances for stainless steel appliances. This can update the look of your kitchen instantly.
  2. Switch out your old countertops. If your home has laminate or Corian countertops, replace them with granite. Granite can get expensive, so stick to some of the more affordable granite options including Napoli, Baltic Brown, and St Cecilia. Save the more expensive granite for your new home.
  3. Paint. Repaint your kitchen cabinets and add new hardware. This simple change can have a big impact, and doesn’t cost much!
Try these three quick fixes to update your kitchen in time for your open house! Contact a HUNT Real Estate Professional if you're thinking about selling your home.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Insuring Your Jewelry: Why You Should Consider Jewelry Insurance This Valentine's Day

Blog Header Insuring Your Jewelry with Red Jewels Image
Gifts are a hallmark of Valentine’s Day, the ultimate Hallmark holiday. And for this designated day of love, while some people prefer roses, others prefer gifts in the form of rose (or white, or yellow) gold: that perfect piece of jewelry.

Choosing jewelry for someone special or being on the receiving end of such a thoughtful gift should be a memorable moment. To make sure that memory (and that piece of jewelry!) is never tarnished, and to keep your gift safe for years to come, we strongly suggest having jewelry insurance added to your plan. Not sure how to go about it or have questions? Here are some answers to a few common questions people have about jewelry insurance:

Don’t I have jewelry coverage already included in my homeowner’s policy?
While some companies do have a specified limit of coverage, it only covers the jewelry under certain circumstances. For example, Homeowners Insurance often covers jewelry when it is lost or damaged in what is considered “peril”, which can range from house fires to home vandalism. While this coverage can be helpful under those limited circumstances, however, there are many other incidents where your jewelry is damaged or lost where the coverage will not apply. To provide another example, your insurance will not cover your ring slipping down the drain while washing your dishes. Homeowners Insurance often also has a very low limit for jewelry, which may not cover all of your special items, and some companies may also require that you utilize your deductible when making a claim.

Will I need an appraisal?
It will depend on your insurance company. However, many companies now accept the original receipt if the jewelry has been purchased in the past few years. If your items are heirlooms, you will have to get an appraisal, which many jewelers will do for a small fee. Once you have an idea of how much your collection is worth, have a conversation with your insurance agent to see what your options are for coverage.

What if I move? Will I need to update my insurance?
Just as with your normal Homeowners Insurance, you’ll have to transfer your jewelry insurance if you move. Many couples insure diamond rings upon an engagement, and then forget to transfer it when they get married and move residences. Having a helpful agent will ensure that you don’t forget about these details while you’re in the midst of so many exciting milestones!

Where should I keep my jewelry to keep it safe?
When you’re not wearing your jewelry, you should always have your pieces stored in a safe and locked space. Most office supply stores carry watertight and fire safe lockboxes and safes. This can be helpful to keep your important documents in as well, in case something should happen to your home.

With many different coverage options, HUNT Insurance is sure to find a plan to best fit your needs. So while you’re picking out that perfect pair of earrings, a statement necklace or a diamond ring, reach out and have a conversation with your HUNT Insurance Agent to find out how to best protect your Valentine’s gift. Learn more about HUNT Insurance by visiting us online.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

10 Tips to Get Your Home Organized for An Open House

So you’ve decided to list your home and you’re feeling good about the steps you’ve taken so far to ensure a successful, non-stressful sale: you’re working with a real estate agent who understands your needs and expectations regarding the process, there are plans being made to market and promote your home, and you’re ready to prepare for an open house by organizing and decluttering years worth of items you’ve accumulated in your home.

…Okay, that last step has the potential to be a bit overwhelming. But don’t worry – we have a few tips to help you tackle what could be years of clutter in a short time.

Before we get to that, though, why is organizing and decluttering your home such an important part of selling and preparing for showings, and why go through those motions when you’re going to sell your home anyways?

First, decluttering creates a clean, fresh canvas for potential buyers who are walking through your home, allowing them to envision themselves living in the space and the ways in which they can make it their own. Keeping rooms in the home clean and free from clutter also makes the space and storage areas seem larger, which is an important consideration for many buyers.

So what are some of the best ways to go about easily organizing and decluttering your home?

KITCHEN

It’s always best to start with rooms you use the most – like your kitchen. Because it is used daily, the kitchen is one of the rooms in a house that tends to collect the most clutter. Here are a few pointers on tackling your kitchen:

  • An easy way to organize, according to Martha Stewart? Store items close to where you use them. For example, try to use the cabinets near your stove for your pots and pans. If you prep your food on a specific counter, use those cabinets for your mixing bowls.
  • While your special silverware and fine china are great showpieces, find them a home outside the kitchen if they aren’t used on a regular basis.
  • Maximize your space by nesting bowls, stacking plates, and use baskets to keep things structured within your cabinets.
  • Store items by category. For example, keep all of your cooking spices in the same drawer. It gives a uniform look and will help you keep the kitchen organized and neat for open houses. 
  • Make sure your refrigerator is clear of notes and messages! A fridge covered in paper can give a disorganized look to the whole kitchen, especially in pictures. HGTV suggests building a bulletin board to have a home for messages.

BATHROOM

Another important room that needs a little attention is the bathroom. The difficult part with organizing the bathroom is while you need to declutter, you also need to maintain its functionality:

  • Find plastic bins and boxes to organize under your sink. Group like products (cosmetics, cleaning supplies, etc) together, and label boxes before storing
  • Another great way to declutter is go through cosmetics, medicines, and lotions in your medicine cabinet. Most have a shelf life and should be disposed of once they are past the listed date.


    STORAGE

    Most people find storage space very important when searching for their new home. In fact, REALTOR Mag states, “Homeowners typically had buyer's remorse when buying a home that was too small or didn't have enough storage space,” so you better believe new buyers will be checking out your closets and storage spaces!

    • Maximize your hanging space in your bedroom closet by hanging multiple rods to hang trousers, skirts and shirts, and save longer items, like dresses and coats, for another closet.
    • Bins and boxes to organize are helpful for organizing items within a closet, both for easier access and for making the most out of the space available.
    • Light can also play a major role in making your smaller closets seem larger. If your closet is dark, consider adding lighting to the inside to help brighten up dark corners and allow buyers to see the entire space inside.
    When you’re going through everything that you don’t use anymore, make sure to take the time to donate items in good condition to your local charitable organizations.

    Keep your home decluttered and organized while your house is on the market, and you could have a quick sale and an easy move when the time comes.  Don't get overwhelmed with all the things that go along with selling your home! Contact a HUNT Agent today to see how they can help you sell your home today.

    Wednesday, February 7, 2018

    HUNT Real Estate Expands to Massachusetts

    ERA Key Real Estate Services merges with HUNT Real Estate to create the only real estate brokerage to have a strong foothold along the 495 corridor and Upstate New York.

    From left to right: Charlie Hunt of HUNT Real Estate Corporation, Cheryl Taylor & Bruce Taylor of Key Realty Services

    HUNT Real Estate ERA, the second largest brokerage firm in the ERA® network, today announced it has joined forces with ERA Key Realty Services, which also ranks in ERA’s top ten. This merger significantly expands the reach of the combined companies, increasing options for homebuyers and sellers, especially in the Northeast.

    HUNT Real Estate ERA brings to the merger its expertise and deep connections in four fast growth real estate markets in Upstate New York – Buffalo, Syracuse, Rochester and Albany, as well as Phoenix, Arizona. ERA Key Realty Services brings markets in Massachusetts - north and west of Boston, as well as Connecticut, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. The combined company will have more than 50 offices and nearly 1600 experienced affiliated agents. The offices will continue to do business under their existing trade names and local management will remain in place.

    To support the continued growth and achieve the full potential of this merger, this combined organization will continue to leverage the suite of digital tools and best-in-class infrastructure provided by the ERA brand. It will also continue to build on both families’ long history and track record of serving the needs of families looking for homes at pivotal moments of their lives.

    “This is an exciting day for the ERA brand network. Two of our oldest and largest brokerages coming together speaks to the strength and longevity of the ERA culture,” said Sue Yannaccone, President and Chief Executive Officer, ERA Real Estate. “We are especially pleased to see the Hunt and Taylor families join forces.”

    “We have brought together two powerful real estate companies, with shared values, but with distinct regional footprints. Our family-owned companies share a focus on providing a great culture for agents, and a compelling attention to quality and trust for our customers,” said
    Peter F. Hunt, CEO, HUNT Real Estate ERA.

    “Joining forces with ERA Key Realty Services creates an opportunity to provide homebuyers and sellers access to a wider range of options. With this stellar combination, HUNT and ERA Key are setting the benchmark for how to grow while maintaining the highest standards of service,” said Charles F. Hunt, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, HUNT Real Estate ERA.

    “HUNT’s outstanding reputation and success in the ERA Real Estate network makes them a perfect match for our clients and helps fulfill our desire to expand our impact,” said Cheryl Eidinger-Taylor, President, ERA Key Realty Services.

    “Family is important to us and it’s important to our customers. We are thrilled to be partnering with another major family-owned brokerage, and we are proud to share a long partnership as part of the ERA family,” said Bruce Taylor, founder of ERA Key Realty Services.

    Tuesday, February 6, 2018

    Engineered Facility Solutions and HUNT Real Estate Corp. announce merger to form HUNT Property Solutions, LLC

    Engineered Facility Solutions (EFS) has merged with HUNT Real Estate Corp. to form HUNT Property Solutions, LLC (HPS).

    EFS, a leader in commercial, industrial, retail, and healthcare property management services was formed by William (Bill) Hibbard in 2005. The company grew substantially to provide property management and building maintenance services to clients across the United States and Canada, including: Quebecor Printing, Quad Graphics, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Stryker Medical, Hero Beech-Nut, and Silgan Plastics. EFS clients in Buffalo, New York include Calspan Business Park, Dent Tower, PostMedia, Grand Island Plaza, and the Darwin Martin House, among others. EFS is ranked #14 on the Buffalo Business First list of Largest Property Management Companies, and was named the M&T Bank Small Business of the Year in 2014. Following the merger, the combined square footage locally under HPS management will be approximately 1.8 million square feet and growing.

    The new company will focus on acquiring new properties where HPS can bring added value to the building ownership, as well as the tenants. The combination of the individual strengths of EFS and HUNT will allow HPS to reduce building expenses, increase tenancy rates, and manage the overall valuation of the property.

    “The benefits to both companies are immediate, with potential for growth in Western New York and across New York State,” explained Bill Hibbard, who will remain as President of the new entity.

    HUNT brings a significant portfolio of properties owned by the Hunt family, as well as a salesforce of over 1,200 licensed salespeople, who can drive properties to the company and work to increase tenancy rates in any building under management.

    The unique approach developed by EFS to property management is what enticed HUNT to join forces. Through a proprietary building condition assessment and planning system, EFS has been successful at reducing the cost to operate a property, while increasing profits to the owner. With the addition of HUNT, building owners will now benefit from in-house leasing representation and property management services.

    “With the creation of HUNT Property Solutions, we have added a new layer of service that we can offer our customers and clients that we have not had before,” said Charles Hunt, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Office for HUNT Real Estate Corp and Chief Operating Officer for HUNT Property Solutions. “Bill brings a wealth of knowledge through his many years of experience in property management, energy management and building maintenance services. That skill set will be the foundation HPS is built on,” said Hunt.

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