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REALTOR® RE/MAX 100 Springfield, VA Licensed in VA www.traister.com

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

What Will You Do When You Win Mega Millions?

I was on the phone with my friend who is a financial advisor today and the conversation inevitably turned to the Mega Millions Lottery, which is up to a $1.6 billion jackpot (just in case you've been living under a rock for the past week). He confessed that he hadn't bought a ticket yet, and I confessed that I'd bought a few. In fact, last week, while I did not win the $900 million jackpot, I did walk away with $2 — and I promptly reinvested it in another ticket.

Since I was talking to a money guy, I asked him how I should take the money when (not if) I win the jackpot tonight.

As it turns out, taking a one-time cash payout is the best way to go. Yes, you walk away with less than 50% of the full jackpot after taxes, but if you invest most of the money and get a return of more than about 1.5%, you will ultimately do better than if you take the annuity option. With some sound financial advice, you can parlay that paltry $750 million into billions.

And when you do I'll be there to help you find a sweet place to live while you watch your fortune grow.

Incidentally, my friend told me he'd give me $1 million if he wins tonight — and I'm holding him to that. 

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Updating a home you're planning to sell - what pays off?

I recently met with a homeowner who is planning to sell her late 1950s home within the next year. She wanted some advice about what improvements she could make to increase the resale value of her home.

This is a subject that comes up frequently with seller clients, and my advice is almost always the same: invest in things you will be able to enjoy while you're living here, and/or invest in home maintenance items you have been putting off doing.

A few years ago I had a client who had invested significant money in the interior of their home, but the HVAC was very outdated and the home had windows dating back to the 1970s. Potential buyers who came to open houses commented on the bright colors and modern look of the kitchen, but ran away when they noted that the HVAC was not keeping the home cool on a hot day, party because the air was escaping through the old windows.

Eventually the home sold — after my client invested in new windows and updated the HVAC system — and my client made that money back on the home because it sold above the asking price.

Replacing outdated HVAC, old windows, and/or an old roof are investments that will reap rewards when it's time to sell.

For this client, I suggested new windows and updating the HVAC, and she was planning a master bath remodel that she will get to enjoy until she's ready to sell the home.

For more information on renovation ideas that pay, visit: https://www.hgtv.com/design/decorating/clean-and-organize/which-home-improvements-pay-off

As always, if you have questions I'm here to help! I also work with a number of contractors who can help make your home renovation needs, so don't hesitate to call or email!

In your corner,