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All About Moving: Moving With Kids

by MMRES Team

Moving, no matter the distance, can be confusing for kids. There are a few easy ways to help them understand the process and ease the transition from one home to another. It can be frightening for a child to see his or her toys being boxed up and loaded onto a big truck. They often wonder if they will ever see their belongings again. Letting kids help with packing and labeling their boxes, even decorating the boxes with stickers and crayons, can give them a sense of control and something to look forward to when the truck delivers the items to the new house. Let them choose a few special toys to keep out as travel toys. Take them to see the new house or show them pictures before the move, so they know what lies ahead.

You may also want to enlist some help with childcare (and/or pet care) for moving day. This can make the whole day easier for everyone, including the kids and pets who will have much more fun playing with friends or grandparents than being confined to the only clear area in the house.

Finally, it’s important to show your appreciate to all the folks who help you out with your move. Snacks, cold drinks, and a simple meal are always appreciated. A small tip for hired movers is a good way to say thank you to a great crew.

Moving can be a daunting task, but a little planning can reduce the stress. If you have lingering questions, you can always contact a Marsha Marsh agent. They are happy to help in any way possible! 

All About Moving: Packing and Unpacking

by MMRES Team

Do it right, do it once!
Create a system. Many families use color coding and labeling systems, detailed inventories with serial numbers, and other organization tactics to ensure the easiest possible unpacking process. Try assigning each room a color or labeling certain boxes as “Unpack First”. Some folks prefer to pack each room as it is, while others choose to group like items. Consider what your plans are for your new home. Will you arrange your family room similarly to your current set-up? Or are you more likely to try out some different décor? Questions such as these can help guide your decision as to whether you pack everything from one room together, or pack all your frames and wall art together, knick-knacks together, etc.

Establish a “Do Not Pack” space to store all the items you will carry with you. This is where you can stash a few toys, cleaning supplies, and valuables to be sure they don’t get tossed in boxes. Additionally, you may want to make a “Do Not Pack” list for yourself and anyone who will help you pack. Believe it or not, some families have opened boxes at their new homes to find toilet plungers and brushes, and even bags of trash!

Packing can be a tedious chore and it is tempting to just toss things in a box. Our expert movers remind us that packing smart can save a lot of time and trouble on the other end. Things like large zip-top bags allow for organization and cleanliness of your belongings. Use the smaller gallon-size bags to hold things like silverware and kitchen utensils so you aren’t running your dishwasher as soon as you unpack your kitchen.

When it comes to unpacking, it’s best to be realistic. Of course we would all love to have the whole house unpacked and put together in a day or two, but chances are that’s not going to happen. Instead, set a goal of unpacking one room at a time, focusing on your most-used rooms first. Before you even open a box, try to plan out the placement of various items. For example, some people find it helpful to use sticky notes in the kitchen to label cabinets and drawers. That way, when the unpacking begins, everything already has a place and you don’t wind up with counters full of pots and pans. You can do the same for shelves in linen closets and even placement of furniture to help the movers.

Essentially, some very basic planning can make your whole packing-unpacking experience smooth and stress-free.

All About Moving: Preparing and Planning Ahead

by MMRES Team

Every move is different. You may have a few weeks to plan, or you may have a few months. Perhaps your employer is covering the cost of your relocation. Are you upsizing or downsizing? These are all things to consider when planning your move.

First things first—do your research! Whether it’s a long distance move or a local one, you certainly don’t want to be scrambling for a truck or moving help at the last minute. Talk to friends and family and use tools like online review sites to choose the moving company that will work best for you. If you’re enlisting the help of friends and their trucks, make sure you ask well in advance and stick to your schedule. If you hire movers, ask about having someone come to your home to determine what size truck you will need. Consider your moving costs. Use a tool such as www.realtor.com’s moving cost calculator to establish a general moving budget. This is also a good time to research things like utilities, cable, and internet for your new home. Some companies have moving specials and you might be able to put together a new bundle that saves you some money.

The next step is to take stock of your belongings. We tend to realize just how much stuff we’ve accumulated when it’s time to move. If you’re selling your current home, you’ve probably already begun the de-cluttering process, so you’re off to a great start. But what to do with all that stuff? Yard sales, Craigslist, and consignment shops are great ways to clear out the belongings you no longer use and make a little cash as a bonus. And while you’re eliminating all the stuff you don’t need, try to get a little pre-packing done. Sort through children’s clothing and pack away the items you’re saving for younger siblings. Consolidate and organize like items, because it really is no fun to have a box in each room of your new home with odds and ends hanging out at the bottom. And speaking of odds and ends, clean out that junk drawer now! There really is no point in moving junk from one house to another.

Finally, make a plan and stick to it. Of course, flexibility is crucial, but if you have a plan, you can prepare for your move efficiently and feel confident and ready to go when moving day arrives. Try tackling one or two rooms a week, creating an inventory of your belongings, and setting up child and pet care for the day of the move. 

All About Moving

by MMRES Team

With the school year winding down and warmer weather on the horizon, prime moving season is about to return for another year. And while the prospect of starting fresh in a new home is exciting, the truth is that moving, whether across town or across the country, is stressful. As if the process of buying a new home or finding that perfect rental weren’t intense enough, you now have to get all of your belongings from one home to another. Planning and executing a move can be overwhelming, and children and pets add a whole new dimension to the process, but Marsha Marsh Real Estate Services is ready to give you plenty of advice to help make your move as smooth as possible.

We thought it would be helpful to gather a few moving tips from some of the most experienced movers out there—military families! These folks pick up and move every few years, all over the country and the world, often with very little notice as to where they are actually headed, yet they manage to transition from one house, school, and town to the next over and over again. Many families have developed their own systems and tricks to streamline the process.

We’ll break it down into a few distinct stages of the move:

What will Senate Bill 76 do for you?

by MMRES Team

We're so close to real property tax reform for Pennsylvanians who need it now. 

What will Senate Bill 76 do for you? 

  • Eliminate school property taxes, saving many homeowners thousands
  • Real property tax relief right now
  • Help seniors struggling to make ends meet due to high property taxes
  • Fully fund PA's public schools

Support Senate Bill 76 and join the fight today at www.RealReform76.com

Attend the Town Hall Meeting on Wednesday, April 2 at 6pm in the Hirt Lecture Hall located at 160 East Front Street, Erie. 

PA Seller's Disclosure Statement

by Mary Huffman, REALTOR®

If you would like more information contact Mary at 814.490.6698 or at 814.833.8840. You can also email Mary at Mary.Huffman@MarshaMarsh.com

Prepping for your Open House

by MMRES Team

An Open House is a lot like a job interview. Even the most qualified candidate needs to make a great first impression. When you're ready to have an Open House, you might want to take the following tips into consideration to make it a success.

  1. We say it all the time, and we just can't say it enough: clean, clean, clean! Don't forget the refrigerator, freezer, oven, cabinets, and closets. Empty the trash cans, scrub the tub, and clean the windows.
  2. Now that you're house is spic-and-span, you'll want it to stay that way for the whole Open House. Consider placing a doormat just inside the door and even some disposable shoe covers to protect your floors from the slush and muck outside.
  3. You'll want the house to smell nice, but not overwhelming. A batch of cookies or a freshly brewed pot of coffee is warm and inviting. Brand new air fresheners in every room might distract buyers.
  4. Remove yourself. This is more than just staying out of the house for a few hours. Tuck away toothbrushes, family photos, refrigerator artwork, and the family calendar. This not only helps buyers envision themselves living in the home, it also protects your privacy!
  5. With a solid blanket of snow on the ground, there's only so much you can do for the sake of curb appeal right now, but don't let potential buyers trudge through snow and slush right up to your front door. A neatly shoveled walk and porch will help make a great first impression.

Thinking about purchasing?

by MMRES Team

Perhaps you're ready to start house hunting and you're new to the process. Not sure what to look for in a house or what questions to ask at a showing? Let us help you get prepared.

  • Establish a relationship with a reliable REALTOR® who will look out for your best interests and help you find the home that best fits your needs.
  • Set a budget and stick to it. You don't want to fall in love with a home you can't afford.
  • Get to know the market so you can be a more informed buyer.
  • Keep in mind that there is rarely a "perfect" home. Compromise is part of the process, but you will find a home you love.
  • Don't hesitate to ask questions! Depending on your situation, you may be interested in updates or upgrades that have been made, whether or not there are schools and/or other children in the neighborhood, or issues that may make the home ineligible for a VA or FHA loan. Don't forget to ask about the Seller's Disclosure, comparables in the neighborhood, and the general condition of the home. 

If you want more information about buying or selling a home, take a look at our Buyer's Guide and Seller's Guide on our website or contact an agent who will be happy to answer all of your questions.

 

Click to Download our BUYER'S GUIDE

Click to Download our SELLER'S GUIDE

What can you do to help your house sell?

by MMRES Team

You may be wondering, "What can I do to help my house sell?" or, "Why is it so important to have an Open House?" Here's what our agents have to say:

  • Take a look at your home as if you were a buyer. Even the tiniest details count, so once you're left with nothing to nitpick, you know your home is market ready!
  • When it comes to pricing your home, it's important to be realistic and flexible. Price according to what the market dictates, and be ready to negotiate.
  • Enlist the help of professionals! A qualified agent, a good home-stager, and folks who can take care of any maintenance issues properly will make your home stand out.
  • An Open House offers many advantages when selling your home. It means better exposure to a wider audience. Curious neighbors might decide your home is fantastic and start talking about it to their friends and family. Folks who are looking at homes casually may drop in and fall in love with yours. An Open House also allows buyers to take their time and really get a feel for the house, more so than if they were checking out photos online or going on a tour of scheduled showings.

​​You can learn more about our agents by click here. 

Doing Our Part to Build a Better Community

by

Philanthropy means goodwill to fellow members of the human race. The word calls to mind many things: wealthy men and women who start foundations to help communities around the globe; a requirement for membership to any number of social organizations; celebrities acting as ambassadors for their favorite causes. But does it make you think of your own community? Does it create in your mind a list of ways that you can help the people who live and work right here in northwest Pennsylvania with you?

At Marsha Marsh Real Estate Services, philanthropy is something we value because we value our community. Doing for and giving to others strengthens the community, and a strong community is one in which we all want to live and do business. As Marsha puts it, “We all make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”

We are committed to using our talents and resources to give what we can in support of the Greater Erie community. We each have our own ways of giving. Some of us participate in ministries at church, while others serve on committees and boards devoted to helping area youth. Some of us are excellent fundraisers and event planners, and some of us make great coaches for youth sports.

We hope that you’ll join us in our continuous efforts to improve this community we love. It is important to keep in mind that philanthropy does not have to be grand or involve major drives or campaigns. It can take place right in your own neighborhood and doesn’t have to cost you a penny. Check in on you elderly neighbor, bring a meal to the hard-working single parent you know, or just keep on shoveling/snow-blowing down the sidewalk a few more houses. It can be something you do on your own or with a group. Give blood or host a blood drive. Sign up for that race you’ve always wanted to run, and consider doing some fundraising while you train.

Know that any gesture, small or large, will make someone’s day better and will likely be passed on. An act that feels like no big deal to you is actually a critical part of strengthening your community. 

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Photo of Name - LIC #RB066549 Real Estate
Name - LIC #RB066549
Marsha Marsh Real Estate Services
8840 Peach Street
Erie PA 16509
814.866.8840
Fax: 814.866.8631

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