Administrative Office Line: 913-745-4446
Sales & Rental Line: 816-268-7800
Maintenance Line: 816-968-9360
"... houses will be a better investment than stocks over the long term. ...I would buy millions of single family homes if I had the means to manage them."
-Warren Buffett



How to Get Your Home Sold: Make Sure the Price is Right

Pricing a listing competitively from the beginning is the best way to attract buyers, but sellers can also spark some interest with a strategic price reduction.
  • If you have had little buyer activity and no offers after 60 days, it may be time to lower the price in order to appeal to active buyers in your area.

  • Don’t wait too long to make an adjustment if it becomes clear that prices in your neighborhood have fallen since your home came on the market. If a competing property is reduced first, your higher price could make your property less attractive to buyers.

  • Keep in mind that the longer a home sits on the market the more likely it is to be perceived as undesirable. Buyers may start to assume there is something wrong even if it was simply overpriced next to the competition.

  • Delaying a price reduction could end up costing you— if your property takes several months longer to sell, you still have to pay the mortgage, property taxes, insurance, maintenance, etc.

Common Bathroom Plumbing Problems

Did you know that leaks in the home waste more than 10,000 gallons of water each year?* Save money and water by staying on top of wear, tear and repair. Here are some quick fixes to common bathroom problems.

A screeching faucet

If your faucet sings to you as you turn the knob, you may need to fix the rubber washer. You can buy an inexpensive kit at most hardware stores. However, if your faucet is old, the screeching may be its final swan song. Replace the whole faucet instead.

If it’ll be a day or two before you get around to replacing the washer in your dripping faucet, tie a long piece of string around the mouth of the faucet. That way, the water runs down the string into the drain instead of dripping loudly into the sink.

The stream of water spits instead of flows

Your aerator, the screw-on screen at the tip of the faucet, may need to be cleaned. Unscrew the aerator and clean the mineral deposits that have accumulated over time. If it’s completely clogged with crusted deposits, you can purchase an inexpensive new aerator from the local hardware store or home center.

The toilet won’t stop running

The most common cause of a leaky toilet is a worn flapper valve. If your toilet is constantly running, replace the flapper and save nearly 200 gallons of water per day. However, before you replace it, check to see that there isn’t another culprit.
  • Inspect the area around the flapper valve and remove any mineral deposits that may have collected around the rim.

  • Make sure the chain is the correct length—if it’s too short, the valve won’t close properly.

  • Consult a professional service person or contractor for any ongoing maintenance issue that you don’t have the time, knowledge, tools or resources to deal with yourself.

  • Check to ensure that there’s nothing impeding the valve from closing, such as the dispenser for the toilet bowl cleaner.

A dripping toilet tank

While some sweat on the toilet tank is normal, dripping may indicate a leak. To find out if your toilet is leaking, squirt a few drops of food coloring into the tank. If the color shows up on the floor, look for cracks on the tank or loose connections going into the tank.

Remember to call a licensed plumber if you have a more complicated plumbing problem.


Avoid the High Cost of Wear and Tear

When it comes to keeping up your home’s surfaces, systems and appliances, there are a number of things you can do yourself throughout the year to ensure they last as long as possible. On the other hand, some problems can become increasingly expensive to remedy or could even lead to dangerous malfunction if they are not dealt with correctly. That’s why it’s often worth the service fee to rely on the expertise of professionals for the following issues.
  • Have your furnace serviced by a heating and cooling system contractor before the onset of winter to make sure it is functioning safely and efficiently. Do the same with your air conditioning unit before the heat sets in to keep it working well.
  • At the end of every winter season, hire a chimney sweep to examine the fireplace and chimney, and have it cleaned or repaired as recommended.
    • At the end of every winter season, hire a chimney sweep to examine the fireplace and chimney, and have it cleaned or repaired as recommended.

    • Call on a pest inspector periodically, or whenever you suspect critters may have moved into your space, to check for signs of termites, carpenter ants, bees, fungus, dry rot, bedbugs, mice or rats. Have any active infestations treated promptly to avoid serious damage.

    • Consult a professional service person or contractor for any ongoing maintenance issue that you don’t have the time, knowledge, tools or resources to deal with yourself.

    • The Problem with Deferring Maintenance
      Deferring maintenance can be expensive since many minor issues have the potential to grow into major problems that can no longer be ignored. These needed repairs can really take their toll when it comes time to sell.

      Homes that obviously need work turn off some potential buyers, and will prompt others to write offers well under market value. Less visible issues that are identified during a home inspection can be deal breakers if sellers don’t agree to address them prior to closing. In extreme cases, lenders may also refuse to fund a loan based on the condition of a home.

      If your home could use some preventative maintenance, feel free to ask your real estate professional to recommend a good service provider.
    A mortgage is often the largest debt that one undertakes and as a result, many homeowners look to pay it o! as soon as they can. In addition to reducing overall debt, paying o! your mortgage early enables you to purchase a second home or investment property. Try one of these strategies to reduce your mortgage principal.
    • Make bi-weekely morgage payments
      Bi-weekly payments involve 26 half-payments each year instead of the standard 12 full payments. By making 13 full payments each year, you’ll pay down the principal sooner and reduce the amount of interest you’ll pay over the long run.
    • Increase your mortgage payments
      You can also increase the amount you pay towards the principal of the payment each month. Most people have higher incomes a few years into their mortgage than they did when they "rst took it out. Keeping your payment on par with your increases in income will help reduce your mortgage amount signi"cantly and may also reduce the amount of your monthly payment over time.
    • Make additional payments
      If bi-weekly payments or increasing your monthly mortgage payment are not feasible, try to make extra payments when you can. If you have extra money at the end of the year, put it toward your principal.
    The majority of consumers who have a mortgage feel it’s important to pay it off as soon as possible, especially if nearing retirement.  
    If you're considering paying off your mortgage early, consider the following:
    • Do you have the cash available to pay down the debt? if you've accumulated six months in emergency reserves and have paid o! other loans and credit cards, your mortgage should be the next debt you target.
    • Will you have enough cash to save for retirement and other financial goals?
    • How long do you plan to stay in the home? It may make more sense to keep your money liquid or not tied up in a home you might sell in a few Years