Ignite FB Tracking PixelAvoid Tunnel Vision When Searching For a New Home - Marsha Bell

Avoid Tunnel Vision When Searching For a New Home

by Marsha Bell 02/04/2019

When buying a house, especially your first home, it's all too easy to make impulsive decisions and fail to "see the forest for the trees."

Although it's impossible to ignore your emotional reactions to a house for sale, it's vital to look at the big picture and make sure there are no red flags being ignored or glossed over.

For example, if the foundation of the house looks unstable or the surrounding neighborhood is showing signs of deterioration, it's ultimately not going to matter how much you love the layout of the kitchen or the convenience of a first floor laundry room. Major problems can overshadow the desirable features of a home and have long-term implications on your finances (and sanity).

Even though the future marketability of a house may be the last thing on your mind when you're searching for your next home, it's a factor worth giving some serious thought to. When that aspect of home ownership is overlooked, it could result in headaches and possible financial loss down the road. While real estate generally has a tendency to appreciate in value over time, there are exceptions.

The good news is that many potential problems can be prevented by combining common sense with the advice of qualified professionals, such as an experienced, certified property inspector. If you're wondering what's covered in a typical home inspection, the American Society of Home Inspectors offers this overview: "The standard home inspector’s report will cover the condition of the home’s heating system; central air conditioning system (temperature permitting); interior plumbing and electrical systems; the roof, attic and visible insulation; walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors; the foundation, basement and structural components."

So while inspectors can't look behind every wall or accurately predict the remaining lifespan of an existing HVAC system, they can provide you with a lot of valuable tips, recommendations, and insights into the condition of a house for sale. Working with a top-notch real estate (buyer's) agent will also help you avoid many of the potential pitfalls of buying a home.

While nobody wants to move into a "money pit," the likelihood of finding a home that's absolutely perfect and doesn't need any repairs, updates, or improvements is extremely low. Home buyers who are too focused on perfection may eventually realize that their standards are unattainable. A successful search for a new home hinges on the ability to distinguish between a minor cosmetic problem, such as an unappealing paint color, and a major problem, like a basement that floods regularly or a roof that's been compromised by storms, falling branches, or long-term neglect.

Although home buyers have differing expectations when it comes to repairs, remodeling, decorating, and renovations, one thing's for sure: Everyone wants to add their own personal touches to a new home and make it feel and look like their own!

About the Author

Author
Marsha Bell

Real Estate is a relationship business. Although we negotiate and market homes, we are in the business of helping people through transitions in their lives (getting married, having babies, empty nesting, investing for family reasons) and for someone to invite us into that process is an honor and requires trust in us and our skill set.

I have been a resident of Marin for over 35 years. I raised my family, devoted time to volunteering at my children’s schools, kept an eye on local politics as they affected education and the quality of life in the region, and acquired an understanding of the cities and neighborhoods of the county.

I honed my skills as an event manager, through 18 years producing an annual gala raising funds for Okizu, which provides a camp for kids with cancer and their families. Overseeing details too numerous to count, my efforts raised over six million dollars with elaborate and creatively themed events. My real estate clients can be certain I will provide the same creativity and attention to detail on their behalf. My organization skills and sensitivity were also needed while serving as the project manager for the state of CA in a pilot program connecting low-income youth to pathways to jobs in the energy industry. Through my own efforts to downsize as my children left the nest, I can be a great help to others hoping to do the same – assisting them not only in finding a new home, but also with the difficult task of shrinking the volume of their possessions – all accomplished with a sympathetic understanding of the emotional aspect of this change. I also hold an SRES designation, taking this a step further with the needs and concerns of seniors.

Whether you’re looking to buy or sell in the Bay Area, I will assist you with every phase of the process. I listen and focus on what my client’s real estate needs are and make certain I exceed their expectations. I have a passion for my real estate career and I love what I do. My success is because of determination, focus and attention to details.

Authenticity, passion, professionalism — these three things show our humanity and build trust.

I look forward to assisting you through your transitions.

TESTIMONIALS

"We really enjoyed working with Marsha on the purchase of our house in Fairfax. Responsive to all our questions and fast moving pace of our purchase, Marsha was great."

- laurafayev 

"I can write a story about how amazing Marsha is. She made the process of selling our condo and purchasing our home so smooth. It is one of the most stressful things we've done. But with her patience, knowledge and overall outgoing personality got us through it. I would definitely use her again."

- robb bwi 

"IF I COULD GIVE MORE STARS I WOULD!! We moved from Austin, Texas with very little knowledge of what to expect from California real estate. Marsha helped us find a beautiful rental apartment to stay in while we searched for our new home and was extremely helpful and knowledgeable when learning the in's and out's of different areas of SF and Marin. Marsha understands the needs of a client. I always felt like I could contact her for any questions I had. There was a delay in the arrival of our furniture and Marsha lent us everything we needed to survive in our new house until our belongings arrived. That is going above and beyond!! I cannot impress upon you more how great our experience was."

- Gina S

"After 6 months of searching for a home and multiple heartbreaks we met Marsha Bell and felt an instant connection. Her down to earth personality, market insight and availability was exactly what we needed. Throughout the entire buying process Marsha was attentive, supportive and provided excellent advice as we navigated the largest purchase of our life. Marsha is an excellent listener with deep connections throughout the Novato market, a first class rolodex of tradesmen and inspectors, and an exceptional team. This coupled with Marsha's driven work ethic was instrumental in us closing on our dream home in just 22 days! We highly recommend Marsha Bell to anyone looking for a realtor."

- Jason C

"Marsha Bell is one of the best real estate agent I worked with for getting my american dream home come true. She was helping us from the day one, sending us with emails about various properties that match our complex requirements. I am originally from a different country, but Marsha explained all the process involved from seeing the property until closing of the escrow. She helped us in every step choosing the right home loan, performing inspections of properties, talking to planning dept, negotiating with seller for the contingencies etc., I would definitely recommend Marsha Bell with any kind of real estate requirements. If the time ever comes when I will be looking for a new home, there isn't any question on who my Realtor will be!"

- Srini

"People say that selling a home can be one of the most stressful things you can do, but thanks to Marsha I was informed, organized and on schedule for the whole process. As a result, I got my dream offer with the first open house. Having Marsha as your realtor will save you hours of stress and get you a great result."

- Heidi U. 

"Marsha was very attentive to all the details of the selling process. She was very professional and personable at the same time. I highly recommend her if you are thinking of selling or buying a house.

- flysky64 

" Marsha went out of her way to make buying our new home as painless as possible.  She was always one step ahead of us getting things set up and making everything happen quickly. I would highly recommend Marsha to anyone buying or selling a home.  She is very knowledgeable and professional but has a genuine down to earth helpful quality about her.

- Mark B.

"Marsha was more than generous in sharing her time and knowledge with my son and I as he searched for an apartment to rent in the difficult San Francisco market. She researched his needs thoroughly and was able to show us every possible type of apartment in his price range. Her extensive knowledge of the city and the various locations have eased his transition from Boston. Her friendly demeanor and great sense of humor as well as punctuality and easy accessibility made our experience a very pleasant one. I have no hesitation in recommending her highly for any real estate need!"

- Debra S. 

"Marsha showed me around several neighborhoods in San Francisco and set up nearly a dozen appointments for apartment showings. It was my first time in the city and I was pretty daunted by the process of apartment hunting. Marsha picked me up at my hotel each day and spent hours driving me around the city, making things much simpler for me. I was impressed with how organized she was--each day we had a meticulously crafted itinerary. In the end, she was instrumental in me finding my dream apartment in a great neighborhood. I cannot recommend Marsha highly enough."

- James R.