These Are the 5 Most Interesting Tips We Heard from Real Estate Agents in 2021

published Dec 13, 2021
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Ah, 2021. What a mess. Between a global pandemic, political strife, and an absolutely wild housing market, we’ve really been through the wringer this year. And while we can’t really control a lot about the past year, we can at least have a solid hand in the real estate world. If you’re looking to buy or sell a house soon, follow these tips — some of the best we’ve heard from agents all year long.

Bring a Golf Ball When Looking at Houses

Really, any type of ball will do — you don’t have to be a golfer. But according to Stacey Fulton, a real estate agent in Toronto, a golf ball can tell you an enormous amount about a home you’re thinking of buying. If you put it on the floor and it rolls away, you’ll know the floors aren’t level. Outside, you can put the ball down to see if water will flow away from your foundation. You can use it to basically test any surface that should be level. Just be discreet or ask permission — some agents won’t appreciate a ball rolling all over the house.

Buy a Brush Comb

It’s always best to spruce up your house with a fresh coat of paint before putting it up for sale. And if you want to be extra efficient, follow Kate Ziegler’s advice. The Realtor with Arborview Realty in Boston suggests spending a couple bucks to get a brush comb from Home Depot. It makes cleanup super easy, realigning the paintbrush bristles and making sure paint doesn’t get stuck in the brush. You can use it to break up dried paint already in the brush as well. It’s an easy solution that helps keep your paint brushes in good condition for longer.

Use Your Agent After Your Sale

Did you know your real estate agent’s expertise doesn’t end once you’ve successfully bought or sold a house? Keep them in your contacts — you can go to them with questions about tons of things. Seattle real estate agent Katie Melton loves giving recommendations for local services, everything from contractors and mattress stores to dog sitters and horseback riding lessons. She also provides home care tips for buyers who’ve never owned a home before, and can help with estimates on renovation projects.

Buy a Haunted House

OK, hear us out. The 2021 housing market has been absolutely hideous. So while buying a haunted house sounds like a similarly hideous idea, trust us — it’s not. Your friendly household ghosts can actually get you a home at a lower price. Michael Thornton, a licensed real estate broker with Compass in Chicago, says that everything is negotiable, especially if you suspect it might be haunted. And that’s potentially a lot of houses. About a third of Americans say they’ve lived in a haunted house at some point.

Ditch the Smart Fridge

If you’re only upgrading for resale, it’s just not worth it, says Matthew Rathbun, executive vice president for Coldwell Banker Elite. Smart fridges are expensive and the technology gets outdated fast. It’s not really a great selling point anymore, so you might not benefit from adding one your kitchen right before you sell.