All posts by Gary & Robert - Sunnyvale Real Estate Experts

Home Buying Terminology: A Cheat Sheet

Buying a home shouldn’t be rocket science. You find the perfect home, make an offer to the seller, pay a couple of fees, and bam! You just bought a home.

However, buying a home actually has a lot of moving parts which include a number of funny real estate terms you’ve probably never heard before. Are Realtors and real estate agents even speaking English anymore?

To help you out, we’ve come up with a cheat sheet so you’ll know exactly what we are talking about when we explain the home-buying process.

Pre-Approval

Two adults meeting over a stack of paper.If you meet with an agent before you begin looking for homes, they’ll likely recommend you get pre-approved for a mortgage. Mortgage pre-approval is the best first step to buying a home, because it essentially sets your budget for you.

Pre-approval involves sitting down with a lender to discuss your financial portfolio. This includes your credit score, borrowing history, outstanding debts, annual income, and any assets you have. After reviewing all of this, the lender gives you an exact number: that’s how much the bank is willing to lend you.

Not only is your budget set, home sellers will take you more seriously because they know you can qualify for enough loan to support your offer.

Earnest Money

Two parents sitting with a child who is opening a piggy bank full of coins.Defined loosely, earnest money is the money you pay to confirm a contract. When you’re buying a home, this is essentially a good faith deposit. It lets the seller know that you’re serious—serious enough to go ahead and put money down.

This money sits in a joint account (called an “escrow” account) held by both the buyer and seller. When the home purchase is finalized, the earnest money goes toward the buyer’s down payment.

Due Diligence

A few bills next to a checklist that has home-buying items on it.Due diligence refers to the period of time after the seller has accepted a buyer’s offer. This is the time when you as the buyer can schedule inspections, confirm financing, and make sure that buying this home is in your best interest.

Now’s the time to do some research! Have the home inspected by a professional to ensure nothing is wrong with it, consult public records to learn more about its past homeownership, as well as any environmental issues in the neighborhood, and work with your lender to make sure this is a good financial decision.

So…. Are Realtors and Agents the Same Thing?

Yes and no. The primary difference between REALTOR®s and real estate agents is the National Association of Realtors, also known as the NAR. The NAR is a professional organization of real estate brokers that abides by a specific Code of Ethics that all REALTOR®s are required to follow.

A real estate agent works under a brokerage, but is not necessarily a licensed NAR member.

Let’s Find Your Dream Home Together

Young couple being handed the keys to their new home.We’ll never hide behind big words when it comes to helping you find the home that’s right for you.

Give us a call today to begin your home-buying journey.

Here are the Best Places to Live in the Silicon Valley if You Work Here

There are so many reasons to come work in the Silicon Valley—high-paying tech careers. World-famous companies like Apple, Facebook, Netflix, Google, LinkedIn, and more. Tons of innovative new tech and workplace benefits. And plenty of career opportunities.

But… where to live? Here are some of our recommendations for best places to live in the Silicon Valley!

Closest to Major Employers

best places to live in the silicon valley close to workObviously commute times are an important factor in choosing a place to live. So… why not live where you work? Some of the biggest employers and companies in the SV are located in San Jose, Mountain View, Los Gatos, Santa Clara, Palo Alto, Cupertino, and Menlo Park.

Most Affordable

best places to live in the silicon valley that are affordableIf budget is your biggest concern, you might consider choosing a place to live that’s a little more friendly on the wallet. The median home value of San Jose, for example, is $658,000, much lower than some of its neighboring communities—which can range well into the millions.

Sunnyvale’s prices are also a little lower, with averages at $859,100. Another budget-friendly option is Santa Clara, at just $734,500. Other more affordable choices are Milpitas ($635,300) and Mountain View ($973,000).

Most Fun

best places to live in the silicon valley that are funNot ready to settle down out in the ‘burbs and want to make sure you stay close to all the action? You’re probably looking for a city that’s got a pretty hoppin’ downtown scene, like San Jose, or a more college-y town, like Palo Alto (home to Stanford University). Cupertino is known for its Asian culture. Mountain View is much-loved by foodies. And Campbell is another smaller town with a fun Downtown scene.

Best Schools

best places to live in the silicon valley that have good schoolsWelcome to California—where schools sell houses. If you haven’t heard already, finding a home in a good public school district is pretty crucial to protecting your home values. So… which are the best in the area? There are actually a lot of SV towns with great schools—some of which rank among the best in the state. Los Altos Hills, Mountain View, Palo Alto, and Los Altos are all known for their top-notch schools.

Overall Best Places

best places to live in the silicon valleyWant a place that’s got it all—that perfect blend of fun, safety, good schools, major employers, and (somewhat) affordable living? You’ve got a lot to choose from here in the Silicon Valley! Some of our favorites are Mountain View, Los Altos, Los Gatos, Cupertino, Milpitas, and of course, Sunnyvale.

Moving to the Silicon Valley?

If you’re thinking of relocating to or buying a home in the Silicon Valley, then it’s time to contact Gary & Robert. We’re here to help you explore the area, discover its beautiful neighborhoods, and find the perfect place to call home.

How to Sell Your Home During Back-to-School Season: A Complete Guide

As summer draws to a close, so dawns every parent’s favorite season: the beginning of another school year. This time of year can be hectic for every parent, but it may become especially overwhelming if you’re also trying to sell your home.

Don’t worry, though! We’re here to help. We’ve come up with a bonafide game plan to help you sell your home, handle back-to-school season, and maintain your sanity. Ready to learn more?

Here’s what you need to do:

Prepare a Fresh Start with Staging

Bright kitchen interior.The first step to staging a home is to create a blank canvas. After all, you want potential buyers to be able to picture their lives in your home. To do that, you’ll need to take down any personal artwork, decorations, or mementos—school accomplishments, artwork your kiddos may have made for you, personal school pictures, and anything else.

While this may seem like a bummer, it is essential to selling your home.

Get Some Extra Storage

Another essential part of staging your home is removing any and all clutter. This may seem impossible with all the new school supplies, clothing, and toys strewn about, but it’s doable—and necessary!

Consider investing in a storage unit to house excess furniture, summer toys, and old clothing, or even replace a bench, ottoman, or coffee table with one that doubles as a storage chest to house excess items.

Plan for Showings (but make it fun!)

Young girl swinging in the park.Guess what time is perfect for back-to-school shopping? House-showing time!

To get kids out of the house during showings, come up with a list of kid-friendly outings or activities you can take.

Consider going to the library, a movie theater, an outdoor park or nature center, or the mall to kill some time as your Realtor shows off your home.

Make a Showing-Prep Checklist

As your Realtor schedules your home for showings, try to request at least a one to two hour buffer for each one. Then, create a checklist for what you need to accomplish to get your home showroom-ready before each tour.

Have bags pre-packed for when you need to be out of the house for an extended period of time. Depending on your kiddos, you may want to have have extra diapers, toys, books, games, snacks, and anything else you may need (and keep your list of outings handy!).

Create a Cozy Atmosphere Before You Head Out

Cute living room with cacti on the table.Before grabbing the kids and making yourself scarce, be sure to create an inviting and warm atmosphere for your buyers. Here are some general tips for last-minute staging:

  • Open all the windows — pull back the curtains, raise the blinds, and let in the light!
  • Light a soft-scented candle (nothing too crazy) or put out a bowl of potpourri to cover up any odors.
  • Set some calm, instrumental music to play in the background.
  • Put out a bowl of treats for potential buyers to munch on as they tour your home.

Want to Sell Your Home Fast (and stress-free)?

Then you need to partner with a real estate agent who knows their stuff. Give us a call today to learn more about how we can help you sell your home for top dollar—without all the extra stress during this busy season.

Home Buying 101: The Service Providers You Need for Your Home Purchase

When it comes to buying a home, there are more things to consider than you may realize. After all, it’s a lot more complicated than walking into the grocery store to buy a gallon of milk!

Buying a home is one of the biggest purchases the average person makes. As such, you can expect there to be a lot of preparation, negotiation, and paperwork involved. In addition to obtaining a mortgage and signing the paperwork, there are a number of other tasks that need to be completed before you can open the doors to your new home.

Here’s a quick crash course in Home Buying 101: what service providers you need to hire while purchasing your new home.

Mortgage Lender

Man and a woman speaking with a bank lender holding pens.Ideally, you should start talking to lenders before you even begin looking for homes—and get pre-qualified for a mortgage as soon as possible.

Pre-qualification involves reviewing all of your finances, including income, expenses, and savings, with a lender.

Then, the lender will do some math and let you know exactly how much the bank is willing to loan you.

Home Inspector

Before you purchase the home, you absolutely must schedule a home inspection! This usually happens after you negotiate a price and sign the initial Purchase and Sale Agreement with the seller.

The home inspector will carefully go through every room of your new home (including basement, attic, and roof) to ensure everything is in proper working order. If the inspector finds any major issues, you can negotiate with the seller to get them fixed.

The average home inspection costs around $315, but it may end up being higher depending on the size of your home as well as any other add ons. For a larger home greater than 2,000 square feet, it may cost upwards of $400 or $500.

Appraiser

Woman at a computer explaining a home appraisal.After the home inspection comes the appraisal. Your lender requires an appraisal because they want to protect their investment by making sure the home is worth at least as much as they’re lending you.

The appraiser will take a close look at key features in the home and compare them to the features in other homes (and what those homes have sold for). If the appraiser values the home at less than the sales price, the bank will lower the amount of your mortgage to match it. If this happens, you have several options.

Depending on the contract you signed with the seller, you may be able to get your deposit back and walk away. You can also dispute the appraisal by talking with your Realtor about property values. Another option is to negotiate the price with the seller.

Title Company

Title insurance promises peace of mind when buying a home. Basically, when you purchase title insurance, a title company will come in and ensure the seller actually owns the home and the title is valid. This protects you down the line, in case any issues come up regarding past taxes, contracts, or prior mortgages with the home’s title.

It’s also a good idea to purchase owner’s and lender’s title insurance to protect yourself and your lender from any issues with claims to the title of your property.

The cost of title insurance depends on the size of your mortgage and your location.

Have any Questions? We’re Here for You

For even more information on how to navigate the purchase of your home, including all the fees, paperwork, and legal jargon, give us a call today. We’re always here to help.

Tips for Buying New Construction in the Silicon Valley

Buying a brand-new home is pretty exciting! After all, it’s basically been built just for you (and you may even be able to add your own customizations)! Plus, you can’t beat modern designs and amenities—big windows, open floorplans, granite and stainless steel… and you know there aren’t going to be any underlying maintenance issues and big expenses on the horizon.

But before you launch off on a home-buying excursion, here are some things you need to know about buying new construction in the Silicon Valley.

Find an Experienced Local Buyer’s Agent

find an experienced local agent when buying new construction in the silicon valley

When you walk onto a new construction site and are greeted by the agent, remember, that agent isn’t working for you, nor are they worried about protecting your best interests. They work for the builder, which means they’re trying to sell homes for the highest possible price.l

Tip: Find a local agent experienced in new construction before you set foot on any sites—some sites have a policy that requires you to bring your agent to your first visit.

Make Sure You Can Find a Great Location

pick the right neighborhood when buying new construction in the silicon valley

Sometimes buying new means buying farther away from a city center (which tend to be filled with older developments) or being limited in neighborhood choices. Make sure you find a home that’s within an easy commute of work, amenities, and entertainment.

Tip: Ask your agent if a neighborhood you like has good resale potential—i.e., if it’s a “hot” neighborhood.

Do Your Research

researching local builders when buying new construction in the silicon valley

Found a location you love? Before you do any buying, do some research on the builder. View their portfolios, drive by neighborhoods or homes they’ve built in the past, read testimonials and reviews from previous clients. Not all builders are of the same quality!

Tip: A buyer’s agent with experience in new construction in your area will be able to tell you the reputation of many local builders.

Find Out What’s Extra

learn more about additional features and add ons when buying new construction in the silicon valley

Great, you loved the model home and you’re ready to buy! But wait, those granite counters are how much extra? And there’s a charge for crown molding?? Before you make an offer on a home (or even fall in love with one) make sure you find out what features are standard—and which are optional, requiring additional costs.

Tip: Don’t get too discouraged if the features you love cost too much. A good agent may be able to negotiate some add-ons for you!

Don’t Be Afraid to Be Creative

getting creative during negotiations when buying new construction in the silicon valley

You’re likely not going to be able to negotiate with a builder on price. So try some other tactics. You may be able to ask a builder to pay closing cost or add in some upgrades or additional features.

Tip: If your agent has experience in the area, they may be able to give you some pointers on a particular builder’s negotiation style.

Don’t Forego the Inspection

getting a home inspection when buying new construction in the silicon valley

Just because it’s new, doesn’t mean it can’t have problems. And don’t trust a builder to perform the inspections, or assume that just because it’s up to code, that means it’s good to go. Always hire your own private home inspector to take a thorough look at the property.

Tip: Have your agent ask about what warranties the builder may provide. This typically includes a structural or craftsmanship warranty, but there may be other offered for appliances, HVAC, and more.

Get Everything in Writing

getting everything in writing is important when buying new construction in the silicon valley

Talk is cheap. It’s easy for a builder to say they can add an upgrade or promise a move-in date. But until it’s in writing, it’s just talk. Before you sign or agree to anything, make sure all stipulations, upgrades, and dates are spelled out in the written contract.

Tip: Have your agent get a copy of the builder’s documents ahead of time, as these may differ from typical Purchase and Sale agreements used in your area or by your agent.

Ready to Find Your New Construction Home in the Silicon Valley?

If you’re thinking of buying a new construction home in the Silicon Valley, then it’s time to contact Gary and Robert. We’re here to help you explore the area, discover it’s beautiful neighborhoods, and find the perfect home for your lifestyle.

3 Over-the-Top Home Improvement Projects that Just Aren’t Worth It

If you’re planning on selling your home within the next year or so, you’ve probably already started thinking about the best ways to increase its value. But if you’re not an experienced home flipper or contractor, it can be tricky to know which projects are worth it and which simply aren’t.

To save you time and money (and a lot of hassle), here are some home improvement projects that just aren’t worth it (and what you can do instead).

Replacing Old Cabinets

Beautiful completely upgraded kitchen with new cabinets.Depending on what kind of cabinet material you choose, you could be looking at an estimate anywhere between $1,000 to over $9,000 to completely replace your kitchen cabinets. Materials like laminate are certainly less expensive, but prices on real wood can quickly skyrocket.

As an alternative to completely re-doing your cabinets, you might consider sanding them down and re-staining them yourself (or painting, if they’re laminate) to give them an upgraded appearance.

Extensive Master Bathroom Remodel

Sure, there are plenty of homeowners dreaming of a spa-like master bathroom, but with a bathroom remodel averaging anywhere from $5,000 to over $14,000, it’s probably not worth it.

Instead of dropping thousands of dollars into a complete overhaul, consider some smaller upgrades that can still significantly boost your value. You can give your bathroom a much-needed uplift simply by replacing old sink fixtures, re-caulking the tub and shower, or adding in a stylish backsplash.

Adding on a Room

Man using a power-saw to cut through a floor.The national average for building an additional room on to your home is $42,000. And even with the added square footage, there’s no guarantee it will add much (or any!) resale value to your home. How badly do you need that extra room?

A more worthwhile alternative might be removing or adding a wall to create more space (or another room) without increasing the square footage. Another option is to add a deck, which typically costs only around $6,000 and adds desirable outdoor entertaining space (which has been shown to positively affect home values).

Get More Money From Your Home Sale

With so many home improvement options, it can be tough to decide which ones are best for adding resale value to your property. That’s why it’s so important to work with an experienced Realtor to sell your home.

If you’re interested in selling your home, or simply want to chat about your real estate plans, please don’t hesitate to give us a call. We would love to assist you in making your real estate goals a reality.

So, What Does a Realtor Actually Do for Home Buyers?

If you’re actively looking for a new home to buy, it may be tempting to try and do it yourself, without a Realtor. After all, the agent isn’t really working for you, right?

Two-story suburban home made of brick and stucco.There’s a common misconception that real estate agents are only working for sellers, but that couldn’t be further from the truth!

When you’re buying a home, a real estate agent can help you make the right financial decision while maintaining your sanity.

Real estate agents live and breathe real estate, so they know how to navigate the market unlike anyone else.

The Right Buyers Agent Will Make All the Difference

An experienced Buyer’s Agent will keep you on top of the market, show you hard-to-find homes for sale, negotiate your buying terms, handle the bulk of your paperwork, and more. And it won’t cost you a penny!

In fact, here are the 4 things real estate agents do to eliminate stress from your home-buying process.

Help You Find the Right Home

Nice kitchen interior with bar seating and a chrome fridge.You don’t have to spend hours on Zillow wading through thousands of home listings in your area. Need a home with 2,000 square feet, at least two-and-a-half bathrooms, and a large backyard? Tell your Realtor!

Using your guidelines, they’ll provide you with a list of homes that meet your needs. Realtors have access to many homes that are not actively advertised on public sites like Zillow or Trulia.

Negotiate the Terms of Your Contract

In general, Realtors handle the bulk of the paperwork details so you don’t have to!

Contract negotiations are just one example of where it really pays off to have an experienced agent on your side. An experienced agent knows the rules and regulations of buying a home, so they’ll be able to negotiate a contract with the seller to ensure the best terms for you.

Prioritize Your Financial Wellbeing

When you enter into an agreement with a real estate agent, their job is to help you build your new investment in a smart way that ultimately protects your money and your interests.

Their obligation is to helping you decide whether a potential home will be a good, and affordable, financial investment for you.

In short, their primary responsibility is to protect you and your finances.

Answer All Your Questions

Let’s be real, buying a home is one of the biggest financial investments you’ll ever make! Naturally, you’re bound to have a couple of questions — both before and after the close.

Your Realtor will be there to clear things up, every step of the way.

Ready to Find Your Dream Home?

So are we. If you’d like help finding the perfect home, please give us a call.

We’re here to make your life, and your home purchase, as easy and stress-free as possible. Feel free to reach out to us so we can get started!

Things to Know About Moving to Sunnyvale

Welcome to Sunnyvale, where the skies are blue, the weather is warm (but not too warm), and there’s quite a lot to love. If you’re planning on moving to Sunnyvale, you’re in luck—Sunnyvale is a pretty terrific place to call home. Here’s what it’s like to live in Sunnyvale, CA.

There are Tons of Festivals & Events to Enjoy

enjoying great events after moving to sunnyvaleThere’s always something fun happening in Sunnyvale! There are major annual festivals, like the Art and Wine Festival, casual happenings like the Summer Series live concerts on Wednesdays and Jazz and Beyond on Saturdays, and regular year-round activities like the Sunnyvale Farmers Market.

The Transportation Will Take You Anywhere

taking advantage of great public transporation after moving to sunnyvaleGetting around the Silicon Valley isn’t hard. Sunnyvale is on the Caltrain line, which connects to San Jose and San Francisco. It’s also between Highway 101 and 280, for easy access around the area, and is just 15 minutes from the San Jose International Airport.

Fabulous Location Places the Best of Cali within Easy Reach

going to the beach after moving to sunnyvaleNeed to get out of the city? No problem! You’re just an hour away from the white-sand beaches of the Pacific Ocean or the towering green giants of the Redwood Forest. It’s two hours to Napa Valley, four hours to Lake Tahoe, and four hours to Yosemite National Park.

Sunnyvale Has Outstanding Schools

students enjoying great education and public schools in sunnyvaleMuch of California is known for its top-performing public schools, and Sunnyvale is no exception! Its own Sunnyvale School District is home to several top-ranking elementary and middle schools, and its high schools, which belong to the Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District, rank among the best in the state! In fact, Niche.com has named Sunnyvale the #19 City with the Best Public Schools in America. Not too bad…

There are Lots of Places to Play Outside

getting outdoors is easy after moving to sunnyvaleSunnyvale is big-city living with plenty of ways to escape to the great outdoors. The city is home to 17 local parks, where you can find everything from playgrounds and picnic areas to sports fields and courts to pools and splash pads. Sunnyvale also sits adjacent to a 100-acre Steven’s Creek Trail, a paved path ideal for biking, walking, or skating, that connects neighborhoods, parks, and businesses. Plus, it has not one but two public golf courses.

And Plenty of Ways to Connect with the Community

taking a yoga class through the city of sunnyvaleIn addition to its numerous parks, Sunnyvale is also home to the Sunnyvale Community Center, which features walking grounds with a pond, a Create Arts Center, an indoor sports center, an arboretum, and the Sunnyvale Theatre, home to the Sunnyvale Community Players. Plus, you can take tons of all-ages classes, like art, music, dance, yoga, swimming, and more.

Sunnyvale is a Great Place to Call Home

enjoying life and having fun after moving to sunnyvaleIf you haven’t already guessed it, we’ll just come out and say it—Sunnyvale is a great place to call home! And we’re not the only ones who think so; actually, Niche.com ranks Sunnyvale among the Best Cities to Live in America, the Best Cities for Outdoor Activities in America, and the Best Cities for Millennials in America. And those are just a few honorable mentions on a long list of accolades.

Are You Moving to Sunnyvale?

If you’re thinking of relocating to Sunnyvale, CA, then it’s time to contact Gary & Robert. As your Silicon Valley real estate experts, we’re here to help you explore the area, discover its beautiful neighborhoods, learn more about buying a home in Sunnyvale, and find the perfect home in just the right location.

What Do Those Home Selling Terms Even Mean?

Real estate lingo can be hard to decipher because, well, there’s so much of it! It might even seem like your Realtor is speaking another language.

From fancy acronyms to words like “escrow” and “riders,” there are a lot of terms out there that might seem totally foreign. But that doesn’t mean you don’t have to know what they mean!

If you’re in the process of selling your home, here are a few real estate acronyms you really should know.

CMA: Comparative Market Analysis

Man's hand resting on the mouse pad of a silver laptop.A comparative market analysis is a great way to research the market and find out what homes in your neighborhood are selling for. It’s an in-depth report that lists the prices of sold homes that are similar to your home (otherwise known as “comps” or “comparables”).

CMAs provide information about homes that were recently sold, home that are currently on the market, and homes that were on the market but were not sold within the listing period.

FSBO: For Sale By Owner

Home sellers who opt not to use a Realtor will list their home as For Sale By Owner. This simply means the homeowner is selling their home without the help of a Realtor and is taking on all the responsibilities of selling their home.

When you choose to sell without a Realtor, you may be saving money on their commission fee, but you’re taking on a lot of additional work and responsibility. Plus, you may end up losing money in the long run if you don’t know how to stage and photograph your home, market it effectively, or price it correctly and competitively.

Escrow

Escrow refers to a number of documents, payments, and other material that are held by a third party. Once you’ve negotiated the sale of your home with a potential buyer, you’ll want to make sure there’s a proper escrow set up.

Basically, when a buyer makes an offer on your home, they’ll write you a check for “earnest money” (kind of like a security deposit or holding fee). This money is held by a neutral third party until you and the buyer negotiate a contract and close the sale.

Since you can’t use the money and neither can the buyer, the money is considered to be in “escrow”.

Contingency

When you’re negotiating the contract of your home sale with the buyer, there are likely to be a few contingencies in your contract. Contingencies protect the buyer if they fail to qualify for a loan, if they are dissatisfied with the results of the home inspection, or if something else falls through.

Carefully consider all terms of the contract, including specific contingencies, when reviewing offers. The more contingencies an offer contains, the riskier it is to accept the offer, as there are more ways it could potentially fall through. Work with your Realtor to negotiate a contract that benefits you and the buyer.

Need a Translator? We’ve Got You Covered

Allow us to handle all the details of selling your property, giving you more time to focus on finding and relocating to your new home. We’ll be there to guide you through every aspect of selling your home, from pricing it to signing the closing paperwork.

Give us a call today to get started.

The Most Popular Features in Multimillion-Dollar Properties

Ever wonder why some homes sell for millions of dollars? As different as each listing might be, many share a number of common features that are known to bolster home values.

If you’re on the hunt for your dream home, some of these features could be yours! Don’t worry about breaking the bank; prioritizing your wants and needs can help you determine which of these luxury features will fit your lifestyle and your budget.

Here are 5 features of multimillion-dollar homes you can get at affordable price tags.

In-Ground Pool

In-ground pool with small cabana and water slide.Who needs a neighborhood pool when you could have your own?

Imagine spending those warm summer days cooling off by your own private pool.

It’s not uncommon to see multimillion-dollar homes outfitted with gorgeous entertaining spaces, all centered around a luxurious in-ground pool—but many homes in lower price ranges also feature great backyard pool areas, too.

Expansive Outdoor Entertaining Space

It’s often said that your home’s exterior is equally as important as its interior. That’s why we’ve been seeing more and more multimillion-dollar listings with extensive outdoor entertaining spaces.

Common features of outdoor entertaining areas such as these include built-in barbecue grills, full bars, and spa-like outdoor amenities. Multimillion-dollar condos and townhomes might come with a huge private balcony complete with breathtaking views of nearby scenery.

In more affordable homes, outdoor entertaining spaces may consist of patios, porches, and, as we mentioned before, private pools.

Luxurious Master Bathroom

Oversized shower with tiling.At the end of a long day, nothing beats kicking back and relaxing in a spa-like master bathroom. It’s really no surprise that two of the top selling points for a home are the master bathroom and the kitchen.

Oversized glass-paneled showers are a must-have for multi million-dollar properties, as well as soaking tubs and stylish backsplash. Homes in lower price ranges may also feature stylish master bathrooms with upgrades like these.

Guest House or In-Law Suite

Commonly referred to as a “casita” or simply a guest house, this is a smaller dwelling separated from your main home.

Casitas are becoming more and more popular because of their versatility. Use them as a pool house, guest room, or even a source of low-maintenance rental income.

Wine Cellar

Wine cellar with glass bottles.The creme de la creme of luxury listings is… the wine cellar. You know you’ve made it when your home comes with its very own wine room.

Bonus points if your wine room comes with temperature-controlled shelving.

While more affordable homes may not come with wine cellars, you can still find homes with extra space for an excellent home theater, study, mini-library, or game room.

Your Dream Home Doesn’t Have to Break the Bank

In fact, if you budget correctly, you can find the perfect home for you that has a number of special features. Correct prioritizing is key here. So, if you really can’t picture life without that in-ground pool, it may mean you won’t get an extra-special master bathroom or guest house.

Need some additional help working out the details in your home search? We’re here to help. Simply give us a call today to get started finding the home that’s right for you.